Although this month started out as a promising Flaming June, it was a wet and windy evening when former British Diplomat and Author Jean Harrod transported us to far-flung places across the globe. The ladies that braved the rain were wowed with Jean’s account of how she joined the Foreign Office and survived the Marriage Bar to go on and have an illustrious career working in embassies all over the world.
Although still bound by the Official Secrets Act, Jean has put all of her learning, knowledge and experience of diplomatic practices and foreign climes to good use in her second career writing crime thrillers . We were all amazed by thew stores that Jean shared and could have listened for a lot longer, marvelling on the opportunities and remarkable experiences that she had had, and the exciting life she had led. Jean concluded the evening by spending lots of time chatting to members and signing copies of her two books – Deadly Diplomacy and Deadly Deceit. We are now waiting with bated breath for the publication of her next novel based in post-Cultural Revolution China !
We started the meeting with an Extraordinary General Meeting to consider changing our bye-law which limited our membership to 60; we were delighted with the unanimous vote to increase our number to 65, thus giving even more ladies the opportunity to come and join the fun and share everything that we enjoy so much !
May had been a busy month and there was lots of news to share, much of which was included in the HVWI Herald Issue 3 June 2017. As ever, there was lots of goodies on the sales table – organic salad leaves, chocolate tasters, home-made preserves and plants, as well as a surfeit of home-grown rhubarb brought by the President along with some rhubarb gin and rhubarb and custard almond crumbles (with recipe sheets) for everyone to try.
There are still a few places left for our trip to the Festival of 50s at Beamish Museum on 8 July. With the reduced day pass we have been able to keep the cost at only £11 for members and £16 for non-members. The bus is scheduled to leave at 9am and return by 5pm; family and friends most welcome, please contact us to reserve your place.
Our thanks to the evening’s hostesses, Sue and Kate (who stepped in at the last minute), and to Jan for giving a resounding vote of thanks to our visitor. All in all this was another fabulous, fun-filled evening with lots of laughs and chat – all bodes well for our 30th birthday party in July !