Ceilidh Dance newsletter – 2013/14 #4

Please note that the spell check still does not work and my proofreading skills are very inadequate!!! I also apologise that the button which makes the links “live” is also still not working – mabe you can cut and paste until this is fixed.


Well the new dance season has stated for some and for most others thier classes will start this week. This would be a great time for newcomers to come along and check out what all the fuss is about Scottish Country dancing. All classes will welcome you warmly and introduce you to the beginning steps and dances and, BONUS, the first class is FREE!! ome with your friends or by yourself as you don’t need a partner. Wear flat shoes and note that men do not need to have or wear a kilt!! Check out the list of classes on either website: www.rscdsvancouver.org or www.vancouverceilidh.org there is probably a class not too far away.

Did I mention that it is one of the most inexpensive dance form. Check out the cost of other dance classes and compare to the $6 (approx) cost for a 2 hour class each week. It really is a bargain. Many dancers attend more than one class a week. While it admittedly does take some time to get the basic steps and formations everyone still has lots of fun and laughs at class every week and we are really blessed with so many wonderful and dedicated teachers. I am sure you will enjoy it so give it a try. Get out there and Dance Scottish!!

I hope to see and meet many of you soon. Don’t forget that the West End class starts this Tuesday at 7:30 in the West End Community Centre on Denman Street. I think the drop in fee is $6 but it works out cheaper when you pay for the session but of course the first night is FREE!!


Yet another of these pictures of Scotland that I have been sent without any note as to where they are. No guesses last week so I’ll try it again. Maybe you were all on holiday! Send your guesses to ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org
You can look back at prior newsletters and see previous mystery pictures etc.by going to our website www.vancouverceilidh.org.


The next Ceilidh Dance is on Friday, September 27, 2013 so call all your friends and bring them along to the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver with the class from 7 – 8 p.m. and the dance following from 8 – 11 p.m. with the live music of Calanais. Admission at the door is only $10 (students etc. $8). No partner or experience necessary – just bring your smiles and I would suggest flat, comfy shoes.


There were some very good pictures taken at the January 4, 2013 Ceilidh Dance which have been posted on the RSCDS Vancouver Branch Facebook page. If you do not want your picture on that page please contact web@rscdsvancouver.org. The link for the pictures is:



SFU’s School of Scottish Studies website “Scots in BC” has information on how you can add your family history to the site. The website can be accessed at:
https://www.scottish.sfu.ca/scots_in_bc_project It is well worth a visit.


Some fun and interesting sites:




I would like to share an experience with you; it has to do with drinking and driving.
As you may be aware, some of us have had brushes with the authorities on our way home from a night out. Well I for one have done something about it.The other night I was out for dinner and drinks with friends. After having far too much to drink, and knowing full well I was wasted, I did something I’ve never done before, I took a bus home.I arrived home safely and without incident, which was a real surprise, as I have never driven a bus before.

Auld Country Tours are a big supporter of our Ceilidh Dances
James Johnson [auldcountrytours@gmail.com]



Ants Problem:
Ants hate cucumbers.
Keep the skin of cucumbers near the place or ant hole.


Tain Festival

The next Ceilidh Dance will be held on Friday, September 27. Same time, same place, same price, same amount of fun and entertainment. Now it is up to you all to help by planning on coming along on September 27 and bringing loads of friends, family, acquaintances, etc. so we can start the season on a high note. Please do your best to spread the word.




A new website for kilts and accessories. Prices seem excellent, no idea of quality or trustworthiness though: www.aglowmusichouse.com


Fantastic – subscriptions are over the 400 mark at last. This newsletter will go out to 421 people in many cities, provinces & countries. Now my goal is to get to 500!! Please pass along the website to your friends and maybe they will subscribe – www.vancouverceilidh.org

Note: the Celtic Treasure Chest has closed the White Rock store. For information on specials etc. call one of the stores –
Vancouver 604-261-3688; Delta 604-940-5366



Did I tell you that our wonderful children gave us a present of a cuckoo clock? Well it was presented to us while visiting our London family. The clock had been shipped from Bavaria where it had all been hand made. It arrived in a very large box stuffed with styrofoam chips inside which was a heavy smaller cardboard box containing the actual clock. It was naturally heavy as there were three large weights to hand on the three chains. It looked a lovely clock but we were worried about being allowed to take this on our flight as carry on luggage and also whether it would get through security. After all clocks are things used to set other things off. Our family felt there would be no problem and, as it turned out, they were correct. We sailed through security without any questions the only problem was lugging the box around (there are no trollies after you pass through security.)

Now we had to find a place to hang the clock. The instructions were that it had to be high enough so that the chains did not touch the floor but that meant it would be too high to see so we opted for a space near our back door and let the chains fall on the floor though I actually keep winding them up so that they rarely do fall on the floor. We worried that the young grandchildren would play with the weights but they were so enthralled with the clock that they were always running to wach the cuckoo and the movement afterwards.

On the hour the cuckoo appears from its little door and a man is chopping wood then after that dancers appear and birl around to a tune while the water wheel goes around. All very charming and pleasant. It is now one of the highlights of the tour!!

Two picnics this weekend with the West End SCDC one yesterday and then the White Rock SCDC one today. We had great weather for both events. Yesterdays was here and we all had a nice walk down to the beach and a great feast while thsi afternoon we were hosted by the Zacklans and also enjoyed a few dances as wella s a huge lunch.




If anyone has any suggestions or complaints regarding the newsletter please let me know – ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org ==============================================================

It is late fall and the Indians on a remote reserve in Alberta asked their new chief if the coming winter was going to be cold or mild.Since he was a chief in a modern society, he had never been taught the old secrets. When he looked at the sky, he couldn’t tell what the winter was going to be like.

Nevertheless, to be on the safe side, he told his tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members of the village should collect firewood to be prepared.

But, being a practical leader, after several days, he got an idea. He went to the phone booth, called Environment Canada and asked, ‘Is the coming winter going to be cold?’

‘It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold,’ the meteorologist at the weather service responded.

So the chief went back to his people and told them to collect even more firewood in order to be prepared.

A week later, he called Environment Canada again. ‘Does it still look like it is going to be a very cold winter?’

‘Yes,’ the man at Environment Canada again replied, ‘it’s going to be a very cold winter.’

The chief again went back to his people and ordered them to collect every scrap of firewood they could find.

Two weeks later, the chief called Environment Canada again. ‘Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?’

‘Absolutely,’ the man replied. ‘It’s looking more and more like it is going to be one of the coldest winters we’ve ever seen.’

‘How can you be so sure?’ the chief asked.

The weatherman replied, ‘The Indians are collecting a shitload of firewood’




Events happening soon include the start of classes – see website for date, time and location, the Vancouver Branch AGM on the 20th and the first Ceilidh of the season on the 27th

Please see “Coming Events” below for all information.

What it means to be A British Columbian – We love it here and wouldn’t change it for anything

1. You measure distance in hours.

2. You often switch from “heat” to “a/c” in your car in the same day.

3. You use a down comforter in the summer.



Urquhart Castle, Loch Ness

COMING EVENTS IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS: Note: Please check list of classes for all start times and locations.

Sep 9 – 13 Most classes will resume this week — please check list at www.rscdsvancouver.org for contact numbers, level, day, time and location of each class.
Sep 20 Vancouver Branch A.G.M. — 8 p.m. Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver. Come and support the Board (or not!); voice your opinions, make suggestions, hear all the reports; see where your money goes and learn more about the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society. Everyone welcome.
Sep 27 First monthly Ceilidh Dance of the season at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver. Class at 7 p.m. and dance following from 8 — 11 p.m. and all for the fantastic price of $10 (students $8) — info 604-536-9481
Oct 4-6 RSCDS Saskatchewan Branch workshop and Ball — www.rscdssask.org
Oct 12 Bellingham Social
Oct 19 Gleneagles Fall dance 7:30 p.m. in Christ the Redeemer Church, 595 Keith Road, West Vancouver – $10
Oct 20 White Rock SCDC Workshop – Sunday October 20, 2013 Sullivan Hall, 6306 — 152nd Street Surrey
Fee $10.00 – Teacher: Maureen Lyon Advanced class from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.Advanced dancers are encouraged to stay for the afternoon session to assist beginners. Bring your own lunch and join us during the break from 12:00 p.m. — 1:00 p.m. Tea and coffee as well as juice will be provided.
Intermediate and Beginner Dancers will be instructed from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. To register contact:
Laurie Lang at 604-944-6678 — ljreel@telus.net
Gerda Barwieck at 604-531-4595 — gerdab@shaw.ca.
Oct 25 Monthly Ceilidh Dance of the season at the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver. Class at 7 p.m. and dance following from 8 — 11 p.m. and all for the fantastic price of $10 (students $8) — info 604-536-9481
Oct 26 Bellingham Ball in the Majestic Ballroom with music by Calum MacKinnon, Ryan McKasson, Andy Imbrie and Ginny Snowe. All info from Mary at 360-933-1779 or andersonmary41@comcast.net
Nov 1 – 3 RSCDS San Francisco Branch Annual Asilomar Weekend Workshop & Ball. All info at www.rscds-sf.org/


See website www.vancouverceilidh.org for a more complete list

Seattle Branch Info at www.rscds-seattle.org


Tay Estuary


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Come Scottish Country Dancing – it is lots of fun. Just ask anyone who came along to the Dancing in the Park. We had great audience participation so I hope you will all come along and join one of our great classes.

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The next Ceilidh Dance is not until Friday, September 27, 2013 with live music by Calanaish. You have lots of time to spread the word about all the Ceilidh Dances as that is the best (and cheapest) form of advertising. It is great exercise and fun, for all ages, too.

Here is a link where you can watch a short video of a Ceilidh Dance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0MvUwZnY9Ms

The format for all of the regular monthly Ceilidh Dances will be the same with the class from 7 — 8 p.m. and the dance from 8 — 11 p.m. and all dances will be walked and talked through. The price is only – $10 or $8 for students which, for what you get is a super bargain — everyone is welcome. No partner is required and you should wear FLAT, comfy shoes and loose clothing. Children are also welcome but should be prepared to dance with other people as some of the dances require a change of partner. Don’t forget to bring a few extra $$$$ to help defray the cost of the refreshments which are otherwise free.

Water of Fleet

For those who enjoy listening to Scottish music, song, banter etc. try www.andysceilidh.co.uk/ this is a radio programme that you can get sent to you and listen any time you want. Andy is asking everyone to send in their requests so if you have a favourite Scottish tune, song, recitation, band, performer, choir or whatever send an e-mail to andyrossbw@aol.com

The Branch has opened a Facebook Page at “RSCDS-Vancouver” – check it out there are some good pictures etc. www.facebook.com/rscdsvancouver. There is a link on both our website www.vancouverceilidh.org and the Branch website www.rscdsvancouver.org

It really is never too late to come along and join in one of many Scottish Country Dance (SCD) classes and well any time is a great time to do it. You will be made very welcome. Many classes have a policy that the first night is FREE! Plan to come along to try out a class next week. There are classes all around and on different nights so


Go to either www.rscdsvancouver.org or www,vancouverceilidh.org for a list of class locations and times.

For those who don’t know SCD is a fabulous pastime which is super exercise for body and mind. SCD is, naturally, rooted in Scotland but there are groups in almost every country so you can learn here and then dance with other groups when you vacation or travel. SCD is not to be confused with Highland Dancing which is more solo dancing. SCD is usually done with a partner in groups or sets however you do not need to come with a partner. It is more akin to Square Dancing. It takes a year or two of classes, workshops, etc. to get the basics learnt then you can hone your skills in advanced classes. You start by learning the steps and formations. Dances (of which there are over 13,000) are made up of these formations so a good grounding will give you the ability to learn a new dance fairly quickly. SCD has its HQ in Scotland and is known as the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS) and there is a Vancouver Branch of the RSCDS under which there are many clubs throughout the Province (there also are Branches in Victoria and Seattle). There are a great many classes and the ones in the Vancouver area are listed below. Come along — check us out — the first night is usually free and thereafter it will average about $6 a night and that’s for a 2 hour class! You will find many friendly people who will be eager to help you and welcome you to their club. You never know you actually might like it!!

Check the list of classes at either at www.vancouverceilidh.org or www.rscdsvancouver.org. Note that the latter website has the latest updates to temporary changes to times and locations

as well there are classes all up and down Vancouver Island, a number of the Gulf Islands, the Cariboo, Okanagan, etc. etc. and there are various groups all over this great Province, Country, World and who knows where else! Check the Branch website for all these details – www.rscdsvancouver.org

Also the Inverary Step Dance class on Wednesdays in the French School, 1555 West 7th Ave., Vancouver- info b_campbell@dccnet.com



Riddles (answer next week)

last one:

I turn polar bears white
and I will make you cry.
I make guys have to pee
and girls comb their hair.
I make celebrities look stupid
and normal people look like celebrities.
I turn pancakes brown
and make your champagne bubble.
If you squeeze me, I’ll pop.
If you look at me, you’ll pop.
Can you guess the riddle?


The answer to this admittedly lame riddle is, “No.” The reason is that the question at the very end asks if you can guess the riddle and there is nothing that satisfies the requirements above. Some say that pressure is the answer, but they can’t explain how it turns polar bears white or pancakes brown. Nothing turns polar bears white, any more than something turns a white person white, and heat makes pancakes brown, not pressure.


This week:

Say my name and I disappear. What am I?



For upcoming events see www.vancouverceilidh.org and www.rscdsvancouver.org.

Other announcements etc:

Seattle Branch – info at www.rscds-seattle.org


The next regular monthly Ceilidh Dance will be held Friday, September 27, 2013 in the Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, (73rd & Hudson which is between Oak & Granville), Vancouver, We need everyone to help us get as many new comers (as well as former Ceilidh Dancers) as possible to come and join us.

The Ceilidh Dances are a great way to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, etc. Invite all your friends along. Contact me if you will have a group of 12 or more and we can give them a discount!!! This is the last regular Ceilidh Dance of the 2012/13 season and it would be great if we could end with a really big crowd.

We Really NEED YOUR HELP to advertise the Ceilidh Dances!!!! It only costs $10 ($8 for students) – it is worth so much more in fun, exercise and camaraderie. Use any access to free adverts etc. You can also use things like the Youtube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bh2HV3OPBgw or the Face-book page https://www.facebook.com/p.php?i=116203315&k=Z5C5Y4TZPT6G6BD1PKZZTWQQQ6BAW26L34AV&oid=164741310207760

Suggestions to improve our advertising are always welcome. Don’t forget to tell them about the website www.vancouverceilidh.org and get them to “subscribe” to the newsletter.

Thanks to good attendances the finances for the 2012/13 season will still allow the cost to be the amazingly low price of $10 or $8 for students and we provide refreshments although we do ask for your donations towards their cost. We always need your support both by coming along and by helping us to advertise these dances by whatever means you use to communicate with your friends be it e-mail, Face-Book, Twitter, Text or even telephone! Most of you have been to at least one Ceilidh Dance so you know how it goes. You don’t need a partner; you don’t need any experience; you should wear FLAT soft soled shoes; we walk, talk, and call every dance and you should come to have fun and have a good evening on exercise and entertainment and maybe even to learn!

There is a FREE class from 7 — 8 p.m. and the dance from 8 — 11 p.m. with music by Calanais. Remember to bring some extra cash so you can make a donation towards the cost of the refreshments. Without these donations we will have to increase the price of admission again!!

The schedule for the 2012/13 season shapes up as follows:
All on Fridays of course —
September 27
October 25
November 30
January 10
February 7
February 28
March 28
April 25

Come along and get some great exercise while also having lots of fun. We are still working on improving the strength of the smile muscles as well as the bows and curtsies! Please do your best to assist us in letting as many people know as possible. Use Face-book, e-mail, telephone or even word of mouth and tell everyone you know what a fun night it is. We need to attract students from UBC, SFU and all the other colleges and universities. Somehow we have to get word out to these students. Please do all you can to help us. Come one, come all to the same place (Scottish Cultural Centre, 8886 Hudson Street, Vancouver) and the same time (7 p.m. for the class and 8 – 11 p.m. for the dance) and the same amazing price ($10 or $8 for students.)
You should check the website – www.vancouverceilidh.org – from time to time as you can find various pages listing “Ceilidhs and Events;” Classes:” Duncan’s List;” etc. On these pages you can check all the upcoming events, where all the classes are located, times, etc. and some places to find Scottish things or some local trades, etc. I will continue to highlight the more current events in each week’s newsletter but, as stated, the calendar of all events will be available on the website. You should also have a look at the Vancouver Branch website from time to time – www.rscdsvancouver.org – as there is always useful information on it and it is a very good looking site.

If you have any questions regarding the Ceilidh Dances send them to me at ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org

Please check the website – www.rscdsvancouver.org for updates, pictures and news.
Dance — it is good for your health.



Due to considerable gentle reader demand here are some more Tommy Cooper one liners. Yes, he was brilliant!!

1. Two blondes walk into a building……….you’d think at least one of them would have seen it.

2. Phone answering machine message – ‘…If you want to buy marijuana, press the hash key…’

3. A guy walks into the psychiatrist wearing only Clingfilm for shorts. The shrink says, ‘Well, I can clearly see you’re nuts.’


Keep sending jokes, pictures and info you wish to have included. Don’t forget to look at our web pages at www.vancouverceilidh.org

If you know of anyone who would like to be on the mailing list please send them the web address – www.vancouverceilidh.org and ask them to subscribe. If anyone has good pictures from the Ceilidh Dances please send them to me so I can put them on the web page.

If you have any announcements please send them to me preferably in Word; Times New Roman 12pt format with a layout similar to the one used in this newsletter. I occasionally hear of an event somewhere in our beautiful Province, on the Island or in the Interior, but don’t know all the details. This newsletter reaches out to some 427 subscribers (at long last we are over the 400 mark!) from all over the Province, Country and to many other countries as well, so please send me the details of your event and I will only be too happy to include them. Note:- I normally compose the newsletters on Sundays.

Since light travels faster than sound, people appear bright until you hear them speak.

Behind every successful man, there is a woman
And behind every unsuccessful man, there are two.



Upper Largo

Enjoy yourselves – come Scottish Country Dancing – for it is good for your health and you never know you just might …..!

See Coming Events on the website for info – www.vancouverceilidh.org

May your troubles be one, may your blessings be more,
may nothing but happiness come through your door.

Duncan ceilidh@rscdsvancouver.org