Jersey Mark & RAM Lodges go to Bruges - 23rd/25th March 2018

Right on time at 7:30am on Friday 23rd March a full coach left from the Sindlesham Masonic Centre. It would be meeting up with those who had chosen to make their own way either by Eurostar, Euro tunnel or ferry, as a total of 97 members of Jersey Mark and RAM and their guests were heading to the Novotel Centrum Hotel in Bruges for a Ladies Evening. What an inspired choice it was.

Hosted by Jersey Mark Worshipful Master Mike Hennessy and his wife Linda, together with Jersey RAM Worshipful Commander Ian Thomas and his wife Jo, the event had been meticulously planned by the Festival Committee comprising W.Bro John Nixon and his wife Gail. Nothing was left to chance.

Our Friday evening presented the opportunity to meet up in the bar to sample the excellent Belgian beers before a traditional Flemish beef meal. No signs of tiredness as the dance floor was packed long into the evening with us enjoying the live musical entertainment.

After a hearty breakfast we set off in glorious warm sunshine to explore the beautiful city of Bruges. Some took advantage of the conducted tours we had laid on either to a chocolate factory or a beer museum. Others went on a boat trip on the canals or even on a horse and carriage ride through the cobbled streets.

On returning to the hotel, tales were told of the vast bowls of mussels and chips consumed and the delicious waffles. Most had taken the opportunity to buy the locally made chocolates. It was noted that a few had rosy cheeks. Was that due to the sun or the effects of the local beer? We will never know.

The Ladies Evening was a great success. Excellent food and wine and yet more dancing. Not only did our Toastmaster, Worshipful Brother Mike Warner, oversee the evening with real aplomb, he also sung the Ladies Song which was particularly appreciated by all the ladies.

Reminding everyone that the clocks would be going forward an hour on Sunday morning, those on the coach returning home took the opportunity to buy a few items, primarily wine it seemed, from the local Carrefour. On reaching Calais we found that Cite Europe was largely closed but, not to worry, McDonalds was open and lunch was catered for.

We finally arrived back at Sindlesham at 6:45pm.

A truly memorable weekend was had by all and thank you to all those who attended.

Mike Hennessy

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