Volume 22 #3
The Scottish Country Dancer
November/December 2005

Articles in This Issue
The Brief Counting in Gaelic
Fall Festival Dance Tom's Retirement Party ... Scottish Country Dancing Style
Thank You! Calendar of Events
The Brief

Just some things you might want to remember:

  • November 2nd: the day Vancouver USA SCD Late Fall classes start -- both beginning and intermediate!
  • 696-8236: the phone number at Marshall Center to register for classes!
  • November 12th: Portland RSCDS Dance -- check the calendar entry for program and details!
  • Keep checking the Calendar and Demos links on our website at www.VancouverUSA-SCD.org for info and updates about coming events!
Fall Festival Dance
by Susan Shaw
Kilts were twirlin'

Our annual October 22nd dance brought forth a lot of creativity to match the theme "Ain't Miss-Behavin".

All the dances on the program honored a Miss, and you could tell by titles like Miss Bennet's Jig, Miss Burn's Reel, and Miss Milligan's Strathspey.

At the dance we met dancers with aliases like Miss Walla Melon, Miss Step, Miss Chief, as well as a tigress, a medieval maiden, and a pirate. Harkening back to the era when "Ain't Misbehaven" was a popular musical, Marge and Fred Van Nus came in their best 20's garb, and we had a real gangster with a beautiful starlet on his arm (Bart and Valerie Moore). As he raised his Tommy gun Bart was heard to say, "I just brought this along to make sure yous ain't misbehavin."

Many thanks to Lisa Scott (piano) and Leslie Hirsch (fiddle) who provided the lively music, and to our four briefers (John, Liza, Linda Mae, and Geri) who took turns helping us make each dance a fun and stress-free experience. We welcomed folks visiting from Eugene and Portland, Oregon, as well as Kelso, Washington. Several people were happy to call this dance their first. We 'miss'ed our dance chairman, Renee, who had to go home and rest up. Valerie Moore provided many of the decorations. Tigress Van Meter Hord welcomed guests.

It wasn't until the dancing had ended that Marge Van Nus found out that her dear husband, Fred, had organized a sub-theme of 'emerald green' to celebrate their 55th anniversary. As we looked around we could see that most everyone was dressed in green, the delicious goodies on the tea table were green (whenever possible) and the green swag along the top beam was taken down to reveal a sign in green letters declaring "Happy 55th Anniversary." Linda Mae had devised a strathspey in honor of the occasion entitled "Emerald Hills of Home", which was performed on the spot to Lisa's music.

We finished the evening with a relaxed "tea", in the afterglow of the dance and of friendships shared.

Thank You!
by Marge Van Nus

THANK YOU DANCERS, especially the attendees at the Fall Dance, "Ain't Missbehavin'". That was an extremely nice touch for Fred and me -- in celebration of our 55th Anniversary. A big thank you also to Linda Mae for the dance "Emerald Hills of Home" and to those who demonstrated it. The room really looked spiffy, too. Interestingly, the food was as tasty as ever -- even though it did have a green tinge, or I should say "emerald blush"!!

Many thanks, from Marge and Fred

Counting in Gaelic
by Martin MacKenzie

Tha Sinn a' Cunntas nan ireamh -- We Are Counting Numbers.

In the last 500 or so years of Scottish history, Gidhlig has been under constant threat. Even today, according to the General Register Office of Scotland, there are only 92,400 people aged 3 1/2 and over with any knowledge of Gidhlig whatsoever.

How do you suppose a language that is threatened, such as Gidhlig, is kept alive by its speakers today? That is an interesting topic considering that during the week of October 14-22 this year, Am Md Niseanta Rioghail or the Royal National Mod took place in the Western Isles of Scotland.

The word Md means a kind of festival. My Gidhlig teacher derisively calls it the "Whiskey Olympics" although it is more than that pejorative term would indicate. It is a celebration of the Gidhlig culture through competitions of instrumental music, both solo and choral singing, dance, and drama. People of all ages compete, from little ones all the way up to senior citizens. It is also a major social event for Gaels and non-Gaels alike to gather together and renew old frienships as well as forge new ones. The Md attracts visitors and competitors from throughout the UK, Ireland, Australia, Canada and the USA to participate. The Md even has Royal patronage these days and members of the English Royal Family regularly attend this event.

And now, to our lesson. This time, we are going to explore the world of numbers in Gidhlig. The Gaidheal most often think of numbers in terms of twenties although there is a secondary decimal system that has been created for Gidhlig to mesh more effectively with the modern world. Here's how it works up to twenty!

English    Gidhlig      Phonetics             English      Gidhlig        Phonetics

One        Aon           uon                   Eleven       Aon deug        uon jeuk
Two        D            daaa                  Twelve       D dheug        daaa yeuk
Three      Tr           treee                 Thirteen     Tr deug        treee jeuk
Four       Ceithir       cayher                Forteen      Ceithir deug    cayher jeuk
Five       Cig          caewek                Fifteen      Coig deug       caewek jeuk
Six        Sia           shea                  Sixteen      Sia deug        shea jeuk
Seven      Seachd        sheak                 Seventeen    Seachd deug     sheak jeuk
Eight      Ochd          awchk                 Eighteen     Ochd deug       awchk jeuk
Nine       Naoi          nuoe                  Nineteen     Naoi deug       nuoe jeuk
Ten        Deich         jaich                 Twenty       Fichead         feechkut

Now, there is not enough space to lay things out through 100, but to give you some idea, from 20 (fichead) and up, this same pattern is repeated something like this: "One on twenty, two on twenty, three on twenty -- h-aon ar fhichead, dh ar fhichead, tr ar fhichead", et cetera.

Well folks, if this makes your brain itch, it does mine, too, at times.

Chi mi sibh an ath thuras! See y'all next time!

Tom's Retirement Party ... Scottish Country Dancing Style
by Tom Halpenny

If you want to have a great retirement party, just make sure it includes Scottish Country Dancing! It also helps to have some wonderful family and friends attending.

I concluded working 31 years at Hewlett Packard on Friday, October 14. I had previously sent a farewell email message to Vancouver site HP people and a few other friends in other HP sites, and I had a fun time exchanging replies with well wishes from 45 people. I attended a small gathering at HP with a cake and talked about the good old days. I packed up my remaining personal items and returned home from work for the final time.

Once I arrived home, the real fun began. Liza, Kat, and Hannah organized a wonderful retirement party for me to say hello to my friends with whom I will spend the rest of my life doing fun things.

I enjoyed greeting 35 guests. We ate some food and discussed the colorful posters that illustrated the code names of the 22 projects during my HP career.

During the Toasts and Roasts, Kat and Hannah sang a funny retirement adaptation of the "Shaving Cream" song. Susan Shaw then called upon Bart Moore and Linda Mae Dennis to help perform "Tom's Retirement Song", with the catchy chorus, "Tom, Tom, Tom, Tom ... Tom, Tom, Tom, Tom".

The highlight of the evening then began with Scottish Country Dancing in the living room. Liza led three walking dances, including the Tom's-retirement-inspired dance, "Home for Supper". To my delight, I was surrounded with the tribal chanting of "Tom, Tom, Tom, Tom" each time we circled to the left and right.

We finished the evening as I reviewed some festive greeting cards and gifts.

Thank you all for joining me in a wonderful evening to begin my retirement. I look forward to many more years of Scottish Country Dancing with you!


Calendar of Events

Nov 2: Vancouver USA SCD Late Fall Classes Start
Marshall Community Center, Oak/Elm Rooms
1009 E. McLoughlin Blvd., Vancouver, WA, 7:45 - 9:15pm
Beginning and Intermediate classes in Scottish Country Dancing. Classes run through December 21st.
Sign up now!
See the Parks & Recreation catalog online at: www.ci.vancouver.wa.us/parks-recreation/catalog/index.htm
The classes are listed under "Adult Enrichment".
Nov 12: Portland SCD Dance Party
7:30pm Tigard Grange, 13770 SW Pacific Hwy., Tigard.
Live Music by Scottish Rose!

The Program:
    The Frisky                  BJ  Book 26 #10
    Neidpath Castle             IS  Book 22 #9
    Shiftin Bobbins             BR  Clowes
    Portia's Smile              IS  Gertz
    The Machine Without Horses  IJ  Book 12 #12
    Lady Glasgow                BS  MMM 1
    Pigeon on the Gate          IR  Dickson

    The Highland Fair           BJ  Graded #6
    My Friend Joe               IS  Book 38 #2
    Red House                   IR  Book 7 #2
    The Braes of Breadalbane    BS  Book 21 #7
    Jennifer's Jig              IR  Drewry
    The Deil Amang the Tailors  BR  Book 14 #7

Remember the Bizarre Bazaar, too!
Dec 10: Portland SCD Dance Party
7:30pm Tigard Grange, 13770 SW Pacific Hwy., Tigard.

The Program:
    Miss Welch's Reel           BJ  Graded Book
    The Saltire Strathspey      IS  Bk 45
    Royal Deeside Railway       BR  Bk 40
    Jennifer's Jig              IR  Silver City Book
    First Love                  BS  Let's All Dance, Too
    Red House                   IR  Book 7
    Ian Powrie's Farewell To Auchtararder  IJ  Allen
    The Braes of Breadalbane    BS  Book 21
    Dare to Dance               IR  Shelton
    The Frisky                  BJ  Bk 26
    Portia's Smile              IS  Gertz
    The Deil Amang the Tailors  BR  Book 14
Jan 14, 2006: Portland Dance Party
7:30pm Tigard Grange, 13770 SW Pacific Hwy., Tigard.
Jan 28, 2006: Vancouver USA SCD Burns Night
More details as they emerge!
Feb 18, 2006: Vancouver USA SCD February Dinner Dance
Rudy Luepke Center, 1009 E. McLoughlin Blvd., Vancouver, WA, 8-11pm
Live Music!

The Program:
    The Happy Meeting                 J Bk 29
    Miss Jane Muirhead of Dunsmuir    S Dunsmuir Dances
    What a Beau My Granny Was         R Bk 14

    Miss Hadden's Reel    J Bk 23
    My Friend Joe         S Bk 38
    The Westminster Reel  R Bk 45

    Mrs Stewart's Jig       J Bk 35
    The Saltire Strathspey  S Bk 45
    The Clansman            R Bk 32

    The Machine without Horses  J Bk 12
    The Marquis of Lorne        S MMM II
    Fidget                      R Bk 16

    The Bramble Bush                 J Bk 25
    The Duchess of Atholl's Slipper  S Bk 9
    The Reel of the Royal Scots      R leaflet

Dancing is setting Friendship to Music.

  Do you have an item of Celtic interest you would like to see in print?  
  You can contact me in any of the following ways:  
  By mail:  
  John Shaw
  PO Box 2438
  Battle Ground, WA 98604
  By email:  
  The Scottish Country Dancer is a bi-monthly publication of the Vancouver USA Scottish Country Dancers, a non-profit educational organization. For changes of address, please contact John Shaw, PO Box 2438 Battle Ground, WA 98604, . The editor reserves the right to alter or edit any material submitted for publication for reasons of taste, style, or clarity. All materials for publication should be sent by email to the editor at the address above, preferably in straight text. Deadline is one week before the end of the month prior to publication date. Editors of other newsletters may use or adapt any materials in the Scottish Country Dancer unless a specific copyright notice is included. Please credit author and original source.
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