Whilst the Hon. Pipe Major was sunning himself in Malaga (or more likely, due to the time of evening, treating himself to a pint or two of Rioja), the rest of the Eagle Pipers stalwarts held our final gathering of 2013. A very enjoyable evening was had, with plenty of pipes played, chat exchanged and seasonal cheer shared.
The first piper of the evening was Magnus Orr, of Pipefest fame, delivering his inaugural Eagles performance. He delivered a fine selection of music including a March, Strathspey and Reel finishing with the classic John Morrison of Assynt House.
Regular attender Craig Martin was up next, also providing some excellent entertainment and ending with a run of cracking jigs including the Cameronian Rant.
The Hon. President then entertained the crowd with some trivia (to see if someone could displace David Drysdale as reigning trivia champion). The question: “Who is the only Gold Medallist to have played in the Silver Medal?”
We were left to ponder this while listening to Nils Michael playing an astonishing array of tunes on his Santa-adorned bagpipe, including (not kidding) Ding Dong Merrily on High and Oh Come All Ye Faithful – both surprisingly very attractive tunes on the pipes. The trivia question had been successfully worked out by Donald MacLeod in the meantime (answer: John Hanning), and Donald fended off Douglas Gardiner’s attempt to cheat his way in, to claim the prize of a MacLellan chanter reed.
The pies arrived and, with them, a momentous occasion occurred: Lachie Dick joined the Society. Regular readers may wonder at this. “But how”, you ask, “Lachie goes to the Eagles every time?” Correct, but somehow he has managed to avoid actually becoming a member, until now. He was badgered into writing a cheque, putting it in an envelope and addressing it to Iain Speirs, and applying a second class stamp. He was about to be chaperoned to the post box when the Hon. Sec. himself arrived in the nick of time and collected the cheque by hand (stamp to be steamed off for later use). So that’s Lachie paid up for 2013, and hopefully he’ll soon be proudly sporting his new Eagles tie. In a couple of weeks time the automatic direct debit will kick in for 2014. Well done, Lachie.
I had the honour of being the post-pie piper and enjoyed the chance to try out some new tunes. The evening was rounded off firstly with Roddy Weir playing some very lively and well-executed marches and some jigs that practically ignited the chanter, then the newly minted member Lachie Dick, with some truly excellent playing on a lovely bagpipe.
A perfect finish to the year.
Merry Christmas and all the very best for a prosperous 2014, from the Eagle Pipers Society. We’ll be back on Tuesday the 21st of January.