A Year in Just 8 Parts!

  One Down......   What's The Rush?
  Getting Physical   What Else Yer Been Up To?
  On, On?   Refurbished, Same Management
  Taking Off   Our (Almost) Top 10

One Down.....

AhhhhhhThe event of the year just has to be Dawn and Jon’s wedding. Having blossomed into a beautiful woman (must take after her dad!) I guess it was time for her to settle down and she couldn’t have chosen a better guy than Jon. The wedding was held on one of the most perfect days of the year, in one of the most beautiful places in the UK - Grasmere in the Lake District. And there wasn’t a dry eye in the place (too many superlatives — you betcha!) See more and download the father of the bride’s speech (what!!) at http://www.gillatt.org/dawnwedding.

Getting Physical

Yorkshire Three PeaksRace For LifeDespite the passing of another year the old bones are just about holding together! John was with the Garstang guys at the Ballycotton 10 mile race near Cork in Ireland, finishing in a best time for many a year and did the Yorkshire 3 Peaks challenge walk (25 miles) in just over 8½ hours. Noelene and a big bunch of lasses (no, NOT a bunch of big lasses), including Claire and Anne, did the Women’s Race for Life, we took to doing some local walks together on a Sunday afternoon and Noelene and Alex (suddenly we have grandchildren!) took to the paths as well.

On, On?

For the 3rd year in a row John stood in the local elections and (putting a brave spin on things!) did well to get just over 1,000 of the good people of Lostock and Heaton to vote for him, but there was no threat of him actually having to scurry off to Bolton Town Hall! We recently heard Donovan’s 60s song about Vietnam — “The War Drags On” and it reminds us very much of the Iraqi débacle. But we’ll still be working for Ruth, our local MP, when the Rev. Blair calls us to war the campaign. Nationally, the alternatives are just too awful to contemplate (how about that for commitment!). Repeat 100 times a day “Any Labour government is better than any Tory government"!

Taking Off

Skateboards and RampThings started moving at Origins Art (www.noelenegillatt.org), not least Noelene’s studio to — 23 4th Ave (once we’ve kitted out the garage properly!). She’s had quite a few successful community art projects, including one for Bolton’s “Spirit of Sport” for which she worked with a group of local kids to design and make “artistic” skateboards and a ramp.

What's The Rush?

Bedroom Finished!Plans to finish off the house by Christmas seem to have gone the way of the wind. After all last year’s activities we’ve retrenched a little to say the least. Maybe it’s only the year in which the Christmas falls that’ll have to be adjusted!. Anyway, we’ve completed the dining and living rooms and one bedroom (almost!). So, when you come to visit you won’t have to sleep on an airbed in the attic any more. Only three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a hall, landing and stairs to go! Maybe the end of the decade would be a better target!

What Else Yer Been Up To?

Gabriel or Hamster? Rafting
Gabriel or Hamster? Groom, Father of Bride
& Chief Bridesmaid!
Skateboard! Patsy
Skateboard at 130 mph Patsy!

Well, it was another pretty sparse year for live music. Scotty dragged us off to see Dream Theater and they were surprisingly good, in a US heavy rock sort of way. But, by far the best was Peter Gabriel for the second year in a row, “Still Growing Up”. His concert at the Sheffield Arena was, like last year’s Manchester gig, just amazing — and we had front row seats, too. Who knows what’ll be on next year’s musical palette.

Always adventurous, we went whitewater rafting at Bala. Maybe it wasn’t the wisest thing for the father of the bride, bridegroom and chief bridesmaid to do two weeks before the wedding (the bridegroom ended up being “man overboard”!) but it was cold, wet, wild and wonderful. Try it some time (Johnny two Jags did!).

Later in the summer we had a weekend at Silverstone, Jon driving an Audi, Porsche and Ferrari around the Formula 1 track, managing to spin off in the rain. John had a drive around in his favouritest car of all, a Caterham 7. Wow, imagine being on a skateboard at 130 mph!

It was a great party year too. Apart from the best of all, Dawn and Jon’s do in the Lake District (did I mention that they got wed?!) there was Jimmy’s 40th in Salisbury, on what I guess was the hottest weekend of the summer and in the spring, sister Helen (the Ab Fab Patsy Stone of the Gillatt family!) reached the age when it’s impolite to mention the number of years passed; so I won’t tell you she was 50! Surprise parties are great especially when, as with Helen’s it really is a surprise to the recipient! Finally Eve/Heidi had her even more special birthday and it was time for another great celebration and, thanks to Peter from Switzerland, we had just the gift for her. A genuine cow bell from her friends in the valley!

Unfortunately, no holidays this year. We’d planned to go with Trond and Astrid to their ranch (?!) in Spain but Noelene’s passport needed renewing and the combined bureaucracy of UK Immigration and S. Africa’s Home Affairs Depts. reduced the trip to a dream. Well, we’ll be wide awake next year. What’s more, we’ve already booked a Gillatt invasion of Cornwall at the end of May - so watch out you cider bashers!

Refurbished, Same Management

Oh, Those Hats!Every year the wonderful Coverdales Bistro - wins the coveted John & Noelene award for the best home restaurant in Bolton. And this year it got even better when the dining room was completely refurbished. It’s very exclusive; you may not get a table and, in case you don’t, here’s a picture of the official reopening!

And Finally - Our Top 10 of 2004

  Concert:   “Still Growing Up” Peter Gabriel in Sheffield
  Place Visited:   Whitby
  Home Restaurant:   "Coverdales Bistro" (as always)
  Outside Restaurant:   The Magpie Café, Whitby
  Event:   Dawn & Jon's Wedding
  Party:   Dawn & Jon's Wedding
  Performance:   Father of the Bride's Speech
  Exhibition:   Father of the Bride's Speech
  Discovery:   Noelene likes walking as long as it's not too far, wet, cold or steep!
  Depressing Event:   Dubya wins US election