... for not having posted for a while - quite a good reason actually, as I have had a problem with my eye, and have been struggling to keep my work at the screen to a minimum ! Turned out to be a very large cyst on the bottom lid and five cysts on the top lid ! Easily dealt with once the hospital appointment came through, and much much better now. Makes you realise just how precious sight is though - one friend of ours, an IT journalist, suddenly lost the sight of one eye and is threatened with losing the sight in the other, and that really is terrible. I have been slightly incapacitated no more than that, but I now have some inkling of what he is going through and my heart goes out to him.
What with that and trying to sell the house ... very depressing that we can't seem to manage it but then again, worse things happen at sea, as they say ! But spring is springing, the daffodils are out, the little birds are singing their hearts out and the sun is shining. It's lovely to have the office door open again, despite the kittens rocketing in and out and sending papers in all directions or landing on my keyboard and deleting things accidentally !
What news in the bridge world ? Well quite a lot actually ! Despite no longer being involved with the EBU or BGB Sims, which the EBU have taken over in their entirity, including writing their own scoring program, I seem to be very busy which is good (pays the bills anyway !!). We have just finished the Charity Challenge - I am keying in the last of the results for clubs who can't do it themselves, then we will give it a day or two and finalise that one. We had to run it as two sessions as the EBU won't permit non-affiliated English clubs to play in a licenced event, so we divided it into affiliated and non and were very pleased to have 26 non affiliated clubs taking part just for the fun of it and to raise funds for the Prostate Cancer Charity. Thank you to all who took part and especially to many of you who generously donated extra funds for the Charity over and above the entry fee. We will be sending the Charity a good sum after expenses have been deducted, which is great news.
I am now starting work on publicity for the World Wide Bridge Contest - again unfortunately the EBU won't permit non-affiliated English Clubs to participate, so players wishing to take part will need to find an affiliated club in England to play at, or go to Wales or Scotland ! It's a good event, and we do hope lots of clubs will join us.
We will still be running the WBU Simultaneous Pairs (March and September). These are Green Pointed, and the entry fee is £2.50 per player and we send out the normal organiser pack just as we always have done, so do join us for those if you can. Our own Children in Need event is in November as usual of course - the EBU allows non affiliated clubs to play in that one which is great and again, we will be sending out booklets as normal.
We are rapidly approaching the WBF online womens' bridge Festival - full details of that are at: http://www.wbfwomensbridgeclub.org/ so if you are a woman player or know of any who would like to join in, do have a look at the site and register if you have not already done so. It is running from 16th - 22nd April and promises to be good fun.
The 2012 World University Teams Championships
organised by FISU will be held from 9th - 15th July 2012 ... read more . Do let any bridge playing / university attending youngsters you know about this as it is going to be a great event.
And of course - the World Championships ! The date and venue for these has now been confirmed as Lille - at the Grand Palais - a really good venue. It is the 2nd World Mind Sport Games, so as well as the 14th World Bridge Series there will be Chess, Draughts and Go Championships and, by invitation, Xianqi - Chinese Chess. The dates are 9th - 23rd August. The event is for National, Open, Women's and Seniors Teams, but there is also a Transnational Mixed Teams Championship, open to players who are members in good standing of their NBO which probably means that you could play ! In a World Championship ! How cool is that. A Mixed Team must be made up of two Mixed Partnerships, so - have a think about it and book the dates. The Transnational will actually start on 17th August ... click here for more information and do keep coming back as we will be posting more details on the site as soon as they become available.