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Sunday, 14 August 2016

The Writers' Holiday, Fishguard.

It was like coming home.

What an amazing time. The week, as always, was everything a writer could possibly want in a writing break. It is so beautiful in that part of the world that this is a post in photographs.

  When I see this sign, I know I've arrived.
The Fishguard Bay Hotel

Seeing Sally Truman-Dicken and Carol Fenlon at breakfast
I have no idea what we were talking, or laughing, about.
Sally is one of the nicest people. So pleased we are friends.
 Attended Carol Fenlon's course. She got me writing out of the box.
It was amazing. She is a very talented author and tutor.

The first course I did, at the beginning of the week, was poetry with the amazing Alison Chisholm. We worked though many different types and styles of poetry including, Elizabethan sonnets. I didn't have a clue what to write about until friend and writer, Angela Johnson, suggested that as I had played Cleopatra in Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, I should write a sonnet about it. I did. I wrote the sonnet from Cleopatra's point of view, called it, Cleopatra and Antony and performed it on Poet's Night.

I received two photographs from Luci Fox which she had taken on poetry night. The above photograph is me reading the sonnet I wrote on Alison Chisholm's poetry course, Cleopatra and Antony.  The photograph below is of the very supported audience. Interesting expressions.  

It is a tradition that on the last night of the Writers' Holiday (this year July 29) the Cwmbach All Male Choir with a fabulous female harpist and singer, and the resident pianist, Jayne, entertain us.

"Joy Cornock joined the choir in “Cymru Fach.” Our accompanist Jayne Thomas was making her tenth trip to the Writers Conference and Jayne also played for Joy during her solo section. After the formalities of the concert the choir then entertained our friends with an impromptu afterglow concert that took us through to the witching hour. We are already looking forward to meeting up again next year."

And we're looking forward to meeting up with the Cwmbach choir next year, too. It will be the 19th year that they have entertained us. The first time I saw the Cwmbach choir was at The University of Wales, Caerleon. Since then, for the last three years, they have travelled 'west' to The Fishguard Bay Hotel. As always (in good taste) the mickey was taken out of us English. The concert was fantastic. It was sad too, because the rousing songs mark the end of the extraordinary working holiday. We stand for the Welsh anthem, and in no time tears and sniffles are rippling through the audience.    

On behalf of everyone on the Writers' Holiday, Kate Walker thanked the hard working Hobbs family. Left to right, Eleanor, Gerry (Kate) David and our hostess with the mostess, Anne.
When the concert ends, the fun begins.
The choir could leave when they have finished the concert, but they never do. They join us in the bar where individual members sing their favourite songs. It's great fun, every bit as entertaining as the concert, and it can be very moving.

The guy conducting the gentlemen of the choir is very funny.

Far left, Linda Barrett. Middle Jayne Thomas. Right, Francesca Capaldi-Burgess

A soloist with a voice like Harry Seycombe.
Angela Johnson, Anne Hobbs, and Viv Brown in the doorway.

Solo and chorus. Brilliant

Member of he choir singing to Brenda, a very talented writer and poet.

Brenda was an inspiration to me.
Molly, who was a journalist, is now a writer and poet.

Catherine, Madeleine and Joyce aka JJ - a brilliant poet and artist.
Another inspiring lady. I loved her. She really was amazing.
While we were watching the individual members of the choir singing Joyce was doodling. When she had finished I noticed it was a woman's head and shoulders, and two hands. I looked at the face. "It isn't right. The hair is wrong," she said, and I realised she had doodled me. The hair isn't quite right, and she's given me a smaller nose, but to doodle head and shoulders in ten minutes is amazing. The hands were done on the art course, earlier that day. 

As I said earlier, a talented lady and and an inspiration.

Sally, Luci and I went for a walk after tea one day. It was lovely, warm and sunny one minute, cloudy and windy the next. The address of he hotel is Goodrick, it overlooks Fishguard Bay where there is a walkway from the quayside right out into the sea.

The terrible twins, Luci and Sally,getting blown about

Think it's deadly night-shade
Seagull looking for sand worms

 Now some photographs of wild life, wild flowers, 
and wild women Sally and Luci
This little chick watched us set off on our walk
                This yellow flower may be evening primrose.
 It was growing out of rock.

The biggest crow

                   On the right as we walked was old Fishguard Bay                     
     Busy bee buzzed from thistle to thistle. What a life.
Butterflies didn't stay still long enough to be snapped.
                         Left: The Fishguard Bay Hotel,which overlooks (on the right), Old Fishguard Bay.

Back to the hotel to shower and dress for dinner.

Luci still taking photographs

And last, but by no means least, Sally looking over the bay where we had been walking.