Wednesday, March 4, 2009

A Card from the Queen

I am delighted to send you my warm
congratulations on your One Hundredth birthday,
together with my very best wishes for an
enjoyable celebration.

Elizabeth R.

I have seen the famous telegram sent to centarian citizens of the former British Empire! These days, it comes in the form of a large card with a photograph of the Queen on the cover, a classy gold tassle down the spine, the royal crest inside, and the Queen's autograph.

No, I was not the recipient. Today Elaine and I had the privilege of being part of Kathleen Maloney's 100th Birthday celebration, providing the musical entertainment.

Elaine wore green for the Maloney clan and I wore pink because I always think of Kathleen Maloney as a rosy little lady. (See Rosy 99.)

We had a 50 minute wait before we performed due to the venue being so crowded there wasn't room for the piano, let alone musicians. When the guests had been fed,the staff suggested they transit to the lounge at the other end of Eileen Mary Retirement Home where the piano waited.

I put together a smiley Irish program for this sweet lady whom I've never seen without a smile on her dial. We gave her:

Carolina in the Morning
Side by Side
Sunshine of Your Smile
I'll Take You Home Again, Kathleen (1 verse & chorus)
Irish Eyes are Smiling (1 verse & chorus)
An Irish Lullaby
Peggy O'Neill
I'm Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover

and closed with her special request, the Crimond 23rd Psalm. It brought tears to her eyes. Seeing how much it meant to her, I had to cover a choky throat myself.

Kathleen's last task of the day was to let off 100 balloons, which she did with difficulty -- I've never seen balloons so reluctant to fly! The day was bright and sunny, but even the central courtyard wasn't protected from a playful breeze that proved anything but buoyant. Perhaps to mark her 101st birthday we should try getting high on helium?

Work completed, I scooted off to the tearoom to browse the after-feast. I gathered up a few souvenirs, including a collection of mini cream puffs, chocolate eclairs, and a luscious slice of chocolate cake. Okay, so I normally refrain from that much dairy, but I've certainly sung for my supper this week. I felt a treat was in order.

Tired but Happy

This week was the first time I've attempted bookings on consecutive days (yesterday was a full-on afternoon's entertainment at the Elske Centre). I managed both with aplomb, all praise to the Lord. Now for a few days rest!
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