Saturday, 25 October 2014

Catching up on my blog; The Centenary Year of The Modern Mystic League etc.,

It is surprising when you are busy how keeping up with your blog seems to go to the bottom of the list! I haven't posted for so long but I would like to catch up a bit if I can.

2014 is the Centenary year of The Modern Mystic League (Blackburn & District Society of Magicians) so it has been rather special with lots of events going on. The highlight was undoubtedly the Annual Banquet which took place earlier this month at the Mytton Fold Hotel, Langho near Blackburn. John Pye, Trevor Dawson (Centenary President) and Paul Daniels all spoke and I was pleased to read out messages from the Ledwick and Demaline families and Scott Penrose, new President of The Magic Circle and Shawn Farquhar, International President of the International Brotherhood of Magicians. Brian Sefton and Paul Daniels starred in the cabaret and it was a splendid evening. Debbie McGee (Mrs Daniels) spoke the following day on stagecraft and being a magician's assistant. She proved she is definitely not 'a dumb blonde' as she claimed but has considerable knowledge of all aspects of these topics having trained to a high level as a ballet dancer with the Royal Ballet School before moving into the world of magician's assistant (and wife!) to Paul Daniels. The advice which Paul and Debbie gave to us all, particularly our Junior members, was priceless based on many years of performing experience. 

Our daughter Helen and son in law James were able to visit us for the weekend and along with our son Rob really enjoyed themselves. Joan was sat next to Paul Daniels on the top table and he was telling stories and jokes and doing tricks all night; she was very impressed. He is genuinely a nice guy. 

Helen and James were married in May in Hampshire and that's another whole story save to say that the day was superb with the weather, Church service and Reception all perfect.

Later in May Joan and I visited the Northern Magic Circle Convention in Harrogate when I passed on the Presidential Chain of Office to my successor John Russell. It was a super weekend and we look forward to returning to Harrogate next April for the 2015 Convention. 
Holly, our Labrador, went on her own holiday that weekend with "Digs For Dogs" and we were very impressed with their services as Holly was placed with a lovely family in Bury. She was fine and we highly recommend "Digs For Dogs" to any dog lovers in our area.

Joan and I went on a City Break to Dublin last month and really enjoyed ourselves. We will have to go again. I had bought Dublin Passes and Leap Cards for transport before we went and they were very worthwhile. We had a great time going on musical pub crawls and seeing a lot of the sights.

I am keeping busy with magic. Having passed the audition at the WI HQ (!) I am now on their speakers list and have got quite a few bookings this year and next. I've also been reading a lot about the First World War it being the Centenary year for the start of this momentous event. I've also been trying to catch up on learning Spanish again and practising my violin. There is a lot more I could say but will leave it at that for now.