Volume 26 #1
The Scottish Country Dancer
July/August 2009

Articles in This Issue
The Brief A Wee Bit More
Manager's Message The Law of the Garbage Truck
End of the Annual Membership Drive Calendar of Events
The Brief

Summer is when things wind down, right? Well, there are a few things coming up (details are in the Calendar):

  • July 12th - Our SCD Summer Picnic
  • July 18th - The Portland Highland Games; talk to one of our teachers about how to get free admission!
  • July 24-26 - The Highland Games in Enumclaw
  • Aug 7-16 - The Clark County Fair, with SCD demo on Aug 16th
Manager's Message
by Linda Mae Dennis

Ah, summer! A time to reflect and relax; a time for restoration. At least until the zucchini starts piling up. I was reading a book about a rural community where people only locked their doors during zucchini season - people would sneak in at night and leave zucchini in their neighbors' kitchens!

Last year at this time we were not a branch and we were not a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. And now we are. We even have a checking account at Columbia Credit Union. Looking back, I'd say that's some pretty good work. A big Thank You to everyone who has helped us progress this far, and I guess that has to include everyone who is getting this newsletter, because without everyone - dancers, board members, teachers - we wouldn't have anything.

Looking forward, we have a few official items to clear up with regard to the new branch. And we definitely have some basking in the glow of our new branch status to attend to. Next spring we'll host our 25th or 1st Dinner Dance! This is going to be a super celebration at a great venue - the Fairgate Inn up on the hill in Camas. If you haven't actually seen it, you should give it a drive-by. It looks super cool from the outside, and the inside is at least equal to the outside plus they have a huge ballroom for us to dance in.

Be sure to mark April 17th, 2010 on your calendar, and clear the weekend so that you can host some out of town guests. In-home hospitality is one of the best parts of Scottish Country Dancing - it makes dancing out of town more affordable and is a great way to meet and get to be friends with other dancers.

Marge van Nus has volunteered to chair this event, so please contact her if you have a great idea or would like to offer some assistance.

We're also looking forward to another memorable October Dance. Be sure to talk enthusiastically about Scottish Country Dancing with all your non-dancing friends over the summer. And bring a friend to the picnic, too. It would be great to have a plethora of beginners at the first dance of the season in the fall.

Naturally, we expect to have another fab Betwixt and Between Dance and party during the holidays, and will likely host at least one Folk Dance Potpourri as well.

For the summer, though - a time of relaxation, restoration, and reflection - don't forget to come to the Summer Picnic on July 12th, enjoy the Portland Highland Games on July 18th, sign up for and dance at the Enumclaw Games on July 25th, come every Tuesday to help evaluate dances for the dance contest, sign up for and dance at the Clark County Fair on August 16th, and keep in touch in case other stuff comes up between now and the beginning of classes in September. Oh, and don't forget to pick and process all the summer berries, green beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, and zucchini.

Have a great summer!

End of the Annual Membership Drive
by Van-Meter Hord

If you haven't renewed your membership, don't let this be your last newsletter! It's not too late to join as a charter member of the new RSCDS Southwest Washington State Branch.

Even if you decide not to join the RSCDS right now, please consider renewing as an associate member (previously referred to as a local membership). This level will at least keep you up-to-date with events, travels, and other items of interest.

The PDF application form can be found on the web at www.vancouverusa-scd.org/2009_memappl.pdf. [Those receiving this newsletter by paper-mail will find the form enclosed with this newsletter. If you have already renewed, please disregard the form.]

We hope to hear from you soon!

A Wee Bit More
by Van-Meter Hord

Queen Victoria of England was very proud of her Stuart ancestry. After her purchase of Balmoral in 1848, 'things Scottish' became quite the fashion in her empire.

At the opening of the Crystal Palace Exposition, all the royal children and guests wore Stuart tartans. In 1855 the Queen was visited by the Emperor and Empress of France. All of the Queen's children wore kilts. The Empress was so impressed, she introduced the kilt into Paris fashion.

Perhaps the most popular were Scottish brooches and pins. They usually had silver mountings with moss agate, bloodstone, or cornelian. The most beloved stone was Cairngorm which comes from the mountains in Scotland of the same name. Cairngorm is a smoky yellow quartz (which often has been incorrectly referred to as smoky topaz or Scotch topaz).

(A bit of Queen Victoria's jewelry: she had a bracelet which had her children's baby teeth attached.)

Source: "Answers to Questions about Old Jewelry: 1840-1950" by C. Jeanenne Bell, GG
Image from: http://melindaschwakhofer.wordpress.com/2008/03/07/victoria-sponge/

The Law of the Garbage Truck

An alert reader/dancer saw this, and thought that it may pertain to the social side of SCD - ed.

One day I hopped in a taxi and we took off for the airport. We were driving in the right lane when suddenly a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, skidded, and missed the other car by just inches! The driver of the other car whipped his head around and started yelling at us. My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was really friendly. So I asked, 'Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!' This is when my taxi driver taught me what I now call, 'The Law of the Garbage Truck.'

He explained that many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it and sometimes they'll dump it on you. Don't take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. Don't take their garbage and spread it to other people at work, at home, or on the streets. The bottom line is that successful people do not let garbage trucks take over their day. Life's too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so... Love the people who treat you right. Pray for the ones who don't. Life is ten percent what you make it and ninety percent how you take it!

Have a blessed, garbage-free day.


Calendar of Events

July 12: VancouverUSA Summer Picnic
At the home of the Shaws, in Battle Ground, WA. Picnic, dancing, games, and nature walks. Pick up a flyer in class, or call LindaMae for directions. Show up anytime after noon; lunch at 1pm, dancing after lunch.

Bring: a Potluck Dish to share; your Family; your own tableware; lawn chairs; binoculars, cameras, and games.
July 18: Portland Highland Games
At Mt. Hood Community College, Gresham, Or. (Free admission for performers; we will have a tent and do demo and audience participation dancing. Sign up in class!)
See their website: www.phga.org.
July 24, 25, 26: Highland Games in Enumclaw
The 63rd Annual Pacific Northwest Scottish Highland Games and Clan Gathering.

"It is a weekend not to be missed - full of fun, education and traditional Scottish activities, so please join us and enjoy a wee bit of Scotland right here in the Pacific Northwest!" See their website: www.sshga.org

Many SCD dancers will be joining in the "mass medley", scheduled for Saturday. If you are interested, sign up in class or talk to one of the teachers.
Aug 7-16: Clark County Fair
Lots of fun for the whole family. For more information, see their website: www.clarkcofair.com
Of course, the BIG event is the Scottish Country Dancing some of us will be doing at 6pm on August 16th! See you there!
Sep 11-13: Fort Worden Weekend Workshop and Ball
Sponsored by the Seattle Branch of the RSCDS, this workshop has been happening for the last 34 years and has become a well known Northwest dancing event. Inspiring musicians and teachers are brought here from afar to support and refine our dancing skills and provide us with some of the best Scottish music for dancing.

Calum Mackinnon, Edmonds, WA
Lisa Scott, Portland, OR
Keith Smith, Ardnamurchan, Scotland
Ralph Gordon, Charles Town, WV
Muriel Johnstone, Courtenay, BC
Keith Smith, Ardnamurchan, Scotland
Pat Coyle, Niagara Falls, ON
Dennis Wood, Nashville, TN
Eileen Hsu, Bellevue, WA
Bill Zobel, Courtenay, BC
Watch your mailbox (or check their website) for applications starting in April. Or if you have other questions, contact their registrar by email at .

Dance, even if you have nowhere to do it but your living room. ~Kurt Vonnegut

  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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