As anyone who has spoken to me at bridge will know, I am English.
We emigrated in 1975 when I was 15 and luckily had family friends in Dee Why so that's where we went. For the first six months I sulked and moaned but finally settled down. I've always lived on the northern beaches except for brief forays elsewhere. I lived mainly at Manly but have been at Warriewood for a while now.
I was very sporty and always played football with cricket, tennis and other sports thrown in. Then in my mid twenties it started getting hard. I would be exhausted before the end of whatever I was playing. I was diagnosed with MS in 1990, which was strangely a relief as I had been struggling. I have gone from stumbling a bit to one walking stick then two crutches before finally a wheelchair which has now been upgraded to an electrical one.
I worked in IT but had to retire, I did voluntary work for Manly-Warringah but stopped when I found I was shopping for people who could walk better than me.
I live by myself and manage to get by, with a bit of help. I'm pretty stubborn, so it is doable. Stay up way too late watching sport and listening to music. Have got some good friends.
My culinary skills are limited to say the least, so food parcels from Wendy and dishes from Caroline have been gratefully received.
I initially learned to play bridge at Manly primary school when a friend who could play encouraged me. We played at Trumps a few times and that was it....
Then I didn't play for 20yrs but got the itch, so learned again at Peninsula, thanks Harley. Harley also advised me to ring Bernice as she would be good for me to play with. I am so glad I did as she has been a remarkable friend.
The club has been tremendous for me. I was made to feel welcome immediately - Sue being from Manchester didn't hurt. I have met so many good people who have helped me enormously. I must mention Rachael and Maurice who have been sensational. The struggles over the years with wheelchairs in and out of my car to the present day fiasco - thanks for lifts and patience to Caroline, Marietta, John, Viv, Robert (sorry about your back) and Nerida. It does me good to get out.
I really enjoy the game but I have always been very competitive and to my shame this can be seen occasionally at the bridge table, so apologies to my partners. It's always their fault.
There is always a lot more to learn and I feel I am a decent card player but through laziness have never pushed myself to learn a few systems/conventions to be that bit better. I still manage to make a couple of mistakes per session and fall in love with my hands, disregarding partner.
Finally reached 100 masterpoints, although have only ever won one competition (which was a bit dodgy) and shared that with Jeanette.
My favourite contract is NT, I just find it easier but probably call it way too much.,
The club itself seems to be in great shape, the influx of the new keen players has given it a vibrancy - but it's also harder to win now.