Friday, 3 June 2011

AGM and Hay fever

I took a trip down to Abergavenny this week bit did not alight from the train there.No, I continued to Hereford from where I made my way to Hay and the renowned Hay Book Festival. Over the years, I have spent a number of hours in Hay, especially in the book shops, but never have I been to the festival – my loss. This year however, the WI had a presence there and being an avid bookworm, how could I not be there!

WI members were invited to hear Rosie Boycott in conversation with Dame Harriet Walter who was discussing her book, "Facing It, Reflections on Images”. These reflections are beautiful, sensitive, lively, pensive, smiling, old faces of women. A joy to behold, and when studied, these faces reveal so much more than a wrinkle or a blemish. Whether well-known or completely unknown to many people, such faces reflect a microcosm of lives lived to the full, with contentment, possibly with regret but certainly lived. A discussion, with several questions from gentlemen in the audience, was followed by tea and welsh cakes. A thoroughly good way to spend an afternoon – thank you to all at the Hay Festival for inviting the WI.

On Tuesday I shall take another trip, it won't quite take the ferry 'cross the Mersey but I will see that very river on my way to Liverpool for the NFWI AGM at the Echo Arena on Wednesday 8 June. I can almost guarantee a warm day with little wind; as far back as I can recall, the day of the AGM has always been hot and sunny, much like it always seemed to be when taking exams at school!

Over 4,500 WI members are expected to converge on Liverpool; some staying overnight and making a short holiday of it, so I'm getting ready for the tingle I always feel when the untied voices of all those members sing Jerusalem. There certainly is a WOW factor there, I can tell you.