Hi everyone. We are nearly ready for this year's annual Telephone Treasure Trail and have been doing complex manoeuvres in the office to work out what clue needs to go where and which group needs to start with which clue. Yes, it's going
Marion Molteno, an NWR patron has recently published her new book Journeys Without A Map: A Writer’s Life - as an e-book. It’s available from all major e-book suppliers – just click here:https://books2read.com/JourneysWithoutAMapSome of you will
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A socially-distanced walk around West Stow country park - an example of how we have got around all the COVID restrictions.
Where there's a will.... there's a coffee at the end!
Thank you to Sandra for your great efforts. My sunflower, despite being ravaged by slugs, appears to be the most resilient.
We are continuing to hold our monthly meetings on Zoom. Being virtual has not dampened our lively discussions and we are now planning a packed programme for 2021
One of our members, Carrie de Silva from the Nantwich and Audlem group in Cheshire, launched a project at The Women's Library to highlight streets named after women (and how few there are), and to produce short biographies of some of the women named.
If you would be interested in getting involved then please contact Carrie for more details. She'd love to collate local knowledge from across the UK. For more information please click on this link
Romiley members social distancing!
When lockdown started we were all at a loss what to do. All our meetings were cancelled and so we started a weekly Would I Lie To You email with one member of our group of 15 contacting one other member, who had to email a lie while the others emailed a truth about themselves. Later in the week we had to guess who was lying and that person secretly asked another to be the next liar and so it went on. We did not question each other, as in the TV programme but we found out some very interesting facts about each other in the course of the time we did it.
We also revived an idea from a meeting we held several years ago when we chose six words and wrote a story, poem or dialogue including the six words and then emailed them to the group. It was great to read the different ideas we came up with.
As lockdown eased we had meetings in each other’s gardens with a maximum of 6 in each. It was great to get together and see each other face to face and talk about our lockdown experiences and find out about each other’s truths! It was a welcome change from reading emails.
We then decided on a socially distanced walk and picnic, in which 12 of our members took part. We picnicked on a bench and the photo is of us all socially distancing while picnicking. Again it was good to see each other face to face and chat.
We’ve recently started writing Haiku poems with the theme of An Emotional Snapshot of Lockdown and have read many interesting and poignant ones.
As I write this towards the end of July, who knows how our meetings will continue. We’ve enjoyed the outside meet ups and walks and cannot even think of how long it will be before 15 people can be inside in one room again. We’ll just have to get used to being wrapped up while sitting in a member’s garden or walking together.
Poem by Elizabeth Bracken
those chill church halls of two bar fires
and icy toilets with high level flush,
their kitchens full of prohibitions
and cupboards packed with Beryl Ware,
countless cups and saucers in sea green.
who misses tea urns - ancient, modern, gushing out like spouting whales,
or hessian bags of bargain coffee jars?
Dark are the stage lights for the pantomime,
cheap glitterballs and temperamental strip light.
Faded the smell of celebration buffets -
chipolatas, mini quiches, spicy chicken wings.
Silent the dusty out of tune piano, the keep fit beat,
a birthday DJs patter, meditation tapes,
loud clapping from the slimming club
and women's voices over washing up
Sandra's wonderful sunflowers...
The Chandler's Ford Group, like all of us, are having to find different ways of communicating, and they decided at a recent meeting to discuss their favouite walk, because at least it is something we can all do in this time of Lockdown. they have 20 members in their group out of which 12 participated in an online ZOOM meeting. Three others sent their contributions before the meeting. the list of walks was compiled and then emailed to all members... which is something that other groups might like to try!
TO READ ABOUT THEIR WALKS CLICK HERE
The Durham Group have already started having all their meetings online, starting with a Planning Meeting and then their first Discussion Group on the subject of "What is Nuclear Medicine?".
Enid Hoseason the Local Organiser writes "It worked quite well and instead of going around the room and asking members to contribute, we just went around the screen, and like a normal meeting, those members who did not want to contribute, just listened.
Members are using different devices, from iphones to iPads and lap tops so those using phones have to swipe the screen to see everyone in the group as they only see four at a time. it is also useful to use the CHAT button on the bottom of the screen if someone cannot hear very well.
Each week we have had emails from each other, from members who have walked around their gardens and taken photos of their lovely flowers and shared them online - just little things to keep us in touch with each other. I know that tonight, some members have watched the live theatre on the television and others are taking part in the events NWR Head Office are organising.
This is a photo of us enjoying a VE Celebration tea and cake together."
"Oh the times they are a-changing" as Bob Dylan sung and at NWR we are also trying to adapt to the new challenging conditions. Many groups are getting far more technically savvy than they ever imagined possible, holding ZOOM groups with aplomb and forming WhatsApp groups. Here at the NWR office we are also working hard to keep people connected and entertained .
- We have managed to procure free access for all our members to the Digital Theatre Plus online platform. Here you can access thousands of wonderful plays and stage productions.
- We have also increased the number of newsletters with much useful information at this time, and including many quizzes provided by our wonderful members
- We are offering online events and quizzes which are getting wonderful feedback
- We are putting together a book of your poetry inspired by this unique time
So although we are all social distancing and meeting physically isn't yet possible, in some ways it feels as if we have never been closer.
Keep alert (as the government is saying now) and unleash your creativity!
Initiated by the 60th Anniversary of NWR, Buckhurst Hill & Woodford Green reunited some "old timers" as we call ourselves (going back forty years in some cases) and, having arranged a date in early March, we were pleased to be able to go ahead with our plans before the full restrictions were put in place. Most had moved away, but travelled to London for a very enjoyable lunch. In the event, twelve were able to attend (some travelling long distances), and for those who couldn't make it, it was good to have been in touch again. It inspired us to try and make this an annual event!
Adelia is now working from the office on MON & TUES 9 - 4pm, WEDS & FRI 9 - 1pm and Sam is continuing to work from home.
Adelia will be there to answer your calls when she is in the office but alternatively you can leave a message on the office answerphone 01603 406767 and we can check it and pick up messages remotely.
We appreciate your patience and understanding.
Sam & Adelia
WhatsAppening, WhatsAppening ?
Confusion, chaos reign
I try to answer Maureen but
Kath interrupts again
From Canada to custard creams
Camels, change and crocus
Such abundance of the C word
Makes it very hard to focus
Kaiser Chiefs and croquet
Covens, haircuts will be fun
Clever curtains closing
Crosswords, colouring, cajun
I’ve a finger that’s arthritic
Which slows me down somewhat
I’m always getting left behind
Slow down, you rotten lot
The typos keep on coming
With gauge tees, mooing couse
The doves seem to be coping
But groping photo’s not allowed
It was late when Antje joined us
She couldn’t find the link
Connected to another line
Talking to herself we think
You can’t have your cake and eat it
It was virtual you see
And we also lacked a hostess
To make our cups of tea
That did not seem a problem
For in reality
Our ladies, safe behind their screens
Were sipping G&T
One by one we said Goodnight
And signed off for a rest
I so enjoyed my time with you
Bedale Ladies, you’re the best !
Written by Judith Brickwood, a member of Bedale group after their first WhatsApp meeting.
Here are some photos of our group’s Celebration Afternoon Tea at Lytham Hall on Diamond Day. The local press came, took photos and wrote two articles about us. We each had a goody bag containing a special memento which consisted of a tea light holder with our own commemorative transfers affixed. We proposed a toast to Maureen Nicol and a good time was had by all.