headed off to Toronto on the 5th as I was having dinner with Ian Hudghton
and his wife Lily. I have been doing Ian's web site for a few years now
and as well as being an MEP (Member of the European Parliament) he has
also been voted in as President of the SNP.
I thus met them at their
hotel and we headed out to a local sea food restaurant where I had a steak
We had a great night and it
was good to hear how they were all doing.
The next day of course was
the Tartan Day Dinner and the picture is of the two of them taken on that
The Tartan Day dinner was
where the Scot of the Year award is given out and this year it was Hugh
Boyle of Zoom airlines.
I managed to get some
videos and photos of the event although not as many as I would have liked.
I took two sets of rechargeable batteries with me but took the precaution
of buying 5 sets of Duracel batteries just in case. I did in fact
need them but all I got was an average of two pictures per set of Duracels.
What a total pain that was and so I sure won't be buying any more of
I was also hosting Linda
Fabiani and her partner Duncan all the way over from Scotland. Linda
very kindly brought me over a wee present of Scottish Parliament cuff
from left: Linda Fabiani MSP and partner
with Ian Hudghton MEP and wife Lily
You can see the pictures
and videos I took at
We had the Pipes and Drums
to greet us on our arrival and they played both inside and outside.
We then all met in the bar and conservatory for drinks and wee snacks like
mini sausage rolls, Scots eggs, salmon paste on small oatmeal biscuits,
etc. The Pipe band then played everyone into the room where the
musical entertainment was to be held. This was a half hour of
Scottish and Gaelic song and was really excellent.
After this we all headed
for the dinner where there were super heather and flower center pieces for
each table and those were subsequently given to the person on each table
that had a birthday nearest to 6th April. A lot commented on how
attractive they were.
The dinner was excellent
and I noted that most people ate all their haggis, neeps and tatties :-)
We finished up with clootie
dumpling and custard :-)
At the end of the dinner
the award of "Scot of the Year" was given to Hugh Boyle and then it was
the raffle prizes and was delighted that my friends Doug Ross and his wife
Pat won the Zoom airlines flight from Toronto to Edinburgh... well done to
Doug and Pat Ross
I got back around 1am so I
think everyone really enjoyed the event and certainly many commented about
the good time they'd had. So well done to David Hunter for the
At the event I also met
Michael Danso, singer, dancer and actor...
who was brought up in Scotland!!!
Here is a bit about him...
"Stunning" is the word most often used to
describe Michael Danso. His amazing talent as a singer, dancer and actor
have led him to be hailed as "The Complete Entertainer". Singing with
symphony orchestras and jazz groups, Michael has travelled from Toronto to
China and back. He has toured extensively as a singer and dancer with "Riverdance".
He has acted in dramatic roles on TV and the Stage, and has appeared in
hit musicals across North America.
Originally from Scotland, Michael first appeared on stage at the age of
five. Ella Fitzgerald spotted him at the age of 10 and wanted to take him
to the U.S. but his grandmother vetoed the idea. Michael spent the next
nine years continuing to hone his talents in Scotland. Michael finally
came to North America at the age of 19 performing in the hit musical
"Hair". He spent 3 years in Los Angeles, then 3 more touring Japan and the
Far East. He finally settled in Canada where he immediately became a
favourite of audiences and media alike. He has performed in top jazz
rooms, festivals, and night-clubs all across Canada and the U.S.
He has appeared as a soloist with "Riverdance", and has sung and acted in,
"The Three Penney Opera", "Anna Lucasta", "The Boyfriend", "The African
Roscius", and "The Mikado". His film and television credits include:
"Sugar Shack", "Winning Streak", "Sharon Lois and Bram", and "Just Jazz".
No matter how busy his schedule, Michael always finds time for charitable
work. In particular he loves to support The Variety Club having hosted and
performed on their telethons in Toronto, Buffalo, Winnipeg, Kansas City
and Los Angeles.
Michael is now concentrating on his symphonic performances and is
currently booking a tour with top orchestras around the world.
You can visit his web site at
I'm hoping he can be
persuaded to tell us a little of his life in Scotland :-)
I headed home on the Friday which, due to very
slow moving traffic, took me around 5 hours <sigh>.
This being the following Monday as I write
this I am only just getting back into work mode. When I returned I
found a whole pile of books had arrived (Science Fiction ones) and confess
to taking some time off at the weekend to read some of them. Figured
I deserved a wee break :-)
This week is also a time to sort out some of
my personal affairs such as arranging to get back my deposit from the
Hydro folk which I had to pay being new to Canada. My house and car
insurance need to be put on a monthly payments process. So busy
transferring money between by USA accounts and Canada to pay some annual
I note that gas here in
Canada is now around $1.00 a litre.
On the work side I'm working on a bit of a
site re-design as I figure it's time I got some more advertisers :-)