Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Tale of two Turkeys

I know, but once again I have to apologise to worldwide readers for the time it has taken to update the blog. However I do claim mitigating circumstances (1) My photographer - C.... (English-now dabbling in ink & stuff) was seriously late in delivering the photographs and (2) there was not a whole lot to write about. However in the end of the year episode I am delighted to say that once again we have managed to hold a Christmas Party to raise a few pennies for the Zvannieki Childrens Home.

Were it not for the assistance of J... (American - Cigar smoking, whisky drinking - good ole Southern boy), E. (American - king of the scanners) and our very own wonder chef P.... (English- is seriously into rubbish) and indeed M... (Swedish - holds fort at Alberts) - it would never have happened - but more of this later.

First let me rewind the clock to November - Remembrance Sunday

Now here I have apologise for the lack of photographs - entirely my fault -did not know how to work the camera !!

But as Remembrance Services go - this one was poor - C... (English - photographer to be) and I duly timed our arrival as per usual-10.30m- with service scheduled to start , such that the minutes silnce could be held at 11.00am. Not this year however, indeed as we arrived the "service" had nearly finished and the minutes silence was held at around 10.45am. No sign of British Military presence, of course no ambassador - as we do not have one ! - no sign of the Earl of Carlisle - So all in all a poor show, at least in comparison to years gone bye.

But now onto a much happier note, the Christmas Dinner - however even this grand event was not without its mishaps. As before the turkey(s) were ordered from the "usual" source in Riga meat market - however when they were due to be collected a few days before the dinner on the 10th December - no sign of the lady supplier at the market - PANIC !! - all and sundry were involved in tracking down a turkey of suitable proportions, with the strict instructions that it had to be female, as the male bird has little or no breasts ( We all knew that right !) - Finally a humongous 40+kilo turkey was tracked down in Lithuania ( There is a comedy here somewhere) and transported back to Riga - only to find - IT WAS MALE!! - so back to Plan A - revisiting the Riga market and lo and behold there was the lady complete with female turkeys - so we took one - The dinner was on !

The night was different in respect - females were allowed - anything to get the numbers - but if anything it added to the night, and to quote F..... (Australian - hostel guru) " It was the best one yet"

As ever we held a raffle, with over 30 "prizes" ranging from crystal wine glasses to Canadian Ice Wine. PW Tea shirt to Branded beer glasses, and to ensure Fair Play the draw was made by the Irish Ambassador and the lovely wife of the Canadian Ambassador

And what of the Lithuanian turkey I here you ask ? - well on the Friday morning it was duly transported along with the food leftovers to St. Saviours church - to be made into soup, for their Saturday morning soup kitchen.

So all that helped make this happen, and who made such great contributions I thank you, and Hope that in 2010 we can make good on the promise to hold a barbecue at Zvannieki.

E........ (Canadian- knows the Canadian ambassador intimately)
Spot the Irish Ambassador

Ambassadorial sit in
Is this love ?
Or is THIS love ??
No - This IS love !!
Back room Boys

and of course the imperial Chef and helpers

Because of the uncertainty when we started to organise the dinner the vicar - Juris Calitis, did not attend, and so the money raised was a total surprise and if I may quote his e-mail on learning of the dinner " David, you bring me wonderful news and we are so happy to receive this wonderful effort on behalf of the children " So hopefully the SMiley Fund of 2009 will indeed bring a little extra smile to the childrens faces this Christmas.

If anybody out there would like to make a contribution, either contact myself or send money direct to the Zvannieki account - whose details are :

Zvannieku majas" account is LV32UBAL1100122973001 (The org. reg. number is 40008070557) and the bank is Latvijas Kraibanka AS.

As I write this Christmas has passed, and the New year awaits us, and so all readers of ths blog - I wish you success, prosperity,but above all Happiness in 2010.

If you are wondering about the picture of the cat, this is my live in companion !!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

B....dy Cold

I know I have been remiss in updating the blog, but I promise do update in near future, as during November we had the annual Remembrance Service ( a Farce) and believe it or not we did hold the AnnualSmiley Fund Dinner this year, but owing to the fact that the official photographer - C... ( English with a lack of camera dongle) has not managed to get the pictures to me, it will have to wait until he gets them to me.

In the meantime for all of those of you have departed these shore thought you might like to know how the weather is - so here it is - Bl..dy Cold !!!

So to young J... (Australian - SIP king) who heads back to Australia tommorow - see what you will be missing.

Personally it might be time to get the tights back on !!