By Stephanie Richardson - 8th January 2019 6:07am
Audlem WI January Meeting — Living the DreamHaving dragged my husband, kicking and screaming, to spend the festive season with our daughter and family in the sauna which is Singapore, not even his pathetic effort of flying drones over Gatwick could delay the inevitable misery of a thirteen hour flight!
Having survived the drone fiasco, we arrived just a few days late — you can't even rely on planes now to be on time.
I'd like to write about the beautiful sights and sounds of Singapore, however my glasses steamed up every time I left a train or bus and the constant drone of mosquitoes hampered my thought processes.
I don't care what people think of me as I have discovered mosquitos at least always find me alluring, and, delicious though I am, I don't want to be giving out free blood samples to all and sundry. It all just goes to show that we are not as high up the food chain as we think we are!
So here I am, fresh from my holiday in Singapore — well I say fresh but in reality I am covered in mosquito bites and suffering from swollen feet and prickly heat — once again I am ready and willing to update you all on the antics from our first New Year WI meeting — even though I wasn't there!
Many thanks to Suzie Warren for her explicit note taking and superior photography.
As we were a few members down — probably due to holiday over indulging — Suzie Warren took over register duty and Margaret Wells took over finance. What fun they had, not knowing who was who and who owed what, however we WI ladies are made of sterner stuff and we don't let a little ignorance stop us from the impeccable running of our meetings!
Our President Lin Nicholas conducted our usual business, including a letter from the Nantwich food bank, thanking us for our Christmas collection of food donations.
It seems on just one Friday alone they passed out 3-day food parcels to 68 people. Makes me ashamed of how full my cupboards are, that's if you can see beyond the dust, thus giving me a worthy outlet.
Lin also reported that our Annual Lunch, which takes place at The Lord Combemere on January 18th, will have 57 attendees! A record for our Centenary Year.......I'm just hoping my mosquito bites have healed by then, although it's not far to hobble from Kingbur Place!
Lin then introduced our Speaker, Hazel Griffith, a previous banker, who took voluntary redundancy in the 2000's.
The busy and stressful effects of her lifestyle took a toll — her weight went up and her confidence went down! After much soul-searching, she decided to make a leap of faith and leave the company and the stress behind.
It was her passion for places, and people, that led Hazel to change direction in her life.
She has now discovered a role that combines her love of travel and photography with her skills as a presenter and researcher. Her confidence grew after losing weight and earning her honours degree in Financial Services. During this time of change she worked in various roles; delivering financial training, area manager for the 2001 UK Census and administration within the Methodist Church, for the Cheshire and Staffordshire county areas.
She delivered her talk on being a talker, more specifically a Port talker on cruise ships.
She combines her extensive research with personal experience and many photographs to provide captivating talks to help guests make the most of their time ashore. Her talks cover the history, geography and culture of the ports, with useful information and touches of humour to help everyone have an enjoyable and safe visit as often a hidden gem is revealed!
Places are like people...they have a history that shapes their character and every one is different. That's what makes travel so interesting.
We had visions of a glamorous lifestyle of dining at the Captain's Table, but not so. A ship's cruise speaker has to stay in the bowels of the ship in crews' quarters. Dining is in the Mess. They do get to use the gym equipment — so some compensation there — or not, depending on your view of gyms.
Sue Davies delivered her first talk for our Centenary year meeting. Sue has ingested a mass of information and interesting facts having spent hours perusing our hundred years of records which she will be delivering, in her impeccable style, in a monthly report to our members
I shall reserve this important information for a more in depth report at a later stage as this is a special year for Audlem WI — Our Centenary.
The competition winners were announced — I have no names, however Suzie diligently took photos — and birthday flowers were handed out to Margaret Bailey, Val Butler, Helen Dunlop and Elizabeth Huntbach.
Finally Lin wished us all a safe journey home and 'A Happy New Year' to us all.
As members were leaving Suzie stood in front of the door with her plastic ice cream box, which holds the name tags, and stated loudly 'None shall pass, until you hand over your badges' ... I'm not sure what they make of her!
Keep your cakes moist by eating them all in one sitting!
Never let your man's mind wander -- it's too little to be out alone.
Wednesday 20th Mar
Audlem Methodist Church