Awe yes, the warm cozy feeling of Christmas puts everyone in great spirits. This is more prevalent when surrounded by friends and family. Well here at the BCCCB, what are friends are also family, making the BCCCB Christmas party one of our most joyous of gatherings we have. The stories of this great club and the stories of our Christmas parties had fallen on the ears of the "Big Fellow" himself, Santa Claus, and he had to make an appearance to see for himself the big fun this little club has.... and there was even an Elf in the house as well, I think they work together. There was tons of food and drink as well as laughs and good tidings. It's a party such as this that brings together almost everyone from this great British Car Club. Read on to see how we here at the British Car Club of Cape Breton celebrate Christmas with their extended family.

   

Here is the hostess with the mostest, Carol. If Carol isn't serving something or deep in conversation, she will greet you at the door with a welcoming smile. Come in, take off your skin and rattle around in your bones kind of feeling, just relax and enjoy yourself. Now as a kid, and I believe it was Saturday's Cape Breton Post where there use to be a cartoon on the second page mocking a political faux pas or such. In this cartoon was hidden a drawing of a cat that you had to find. Well here at the BCCCB Christmas Party there is a hidden Elf. Look for him throughout the story. I see him! Between Jean and Anita. Hummmmm ..... The Elf is taller. Entering a little further into this very charming and comfortable house I had seen Joe Renzi and Barc Cunningham discussing cars. I am thinking British cars but it could be talk of Joe's BMW or new Volkswagen. Joe is Italian and he drives two British cars and two German cars..... I wonder if he's at war with himself. Maybe this diversity is more of a peace keeping issue. 

   

There's the Elf again. I think the Elf took a little break from the North Pole to join us here tonight. I am sure we'll be seeing plenty of him throughout the night. Finally I made it to the kitchen. Like most houses, the kitchen is the place to gather. Above we have Don talking to Bonnie and Sheila while Carol and Susan prepare more treats. Is that a box of Hochtaler wine on the counter? Nothing but class here at the BCCCB.

                                        

No Christmas party is complete without a tree and once again Carol has dazzled us with a very nice Christmas focal point where we will all gather around later this evening for some BCCCB induced merriment. The chairs flanking the Christmas tree look to be comfortable enough for Santa. Legs are a looking a tad thin, hope it holds Santa and his guests.

   

There's the Elf again. I told you that you'll be seeing him from time to time throughout the story. Above you see the Elf  passing out holiday treats to all the guests. He's a good helpful Elf. The Elf seems to be spending some time with Bob Jardine. Maybe the Elf is wondering if Bob is naughty or nice. 

   

Back once more to the kitchen. Above you see the lovely Jennifer offering up some delicious treats to Brian. My friend recently purchased the popular "Elf On The Shelf" Not sure if they copied our friend the Elf, if so maybe it would be called Elf throughout the house. This guy really knows how to work a party. Maybe he is making Santa's award list and picking out who's naughty or nice.

   

As the evening went on, more and more of our cherished members continued to arrive. In the first picture we have Norm and Joan, Judy and Bob, Mike, John and Arlene all sitting in the very comfortable living room having a holiday chat. John was telling us that when he left his house to come to the party, the Glace Bay Santa Claus Parade was just passing his house. Arriving early wasn't an option, he couldn't slow Santa down, he had other places to visit tonight. In the next photo we have four very lovely ladies of the BCCCB... Joan Butts, Jean Renzi, Sharon Cousins and Mary MacIsaac, all looking great and sporting a huge Christmas smile. They look like they are waiting for Santa.  .

   

There is one thing about the BCCCB Christmas party, or any BCCCB event that is..... it's the food. We have quite the cooks amongst us here at the BCCCB and they always show their talents at these events. As for myself, I let Sobeys prepare my tray and they did a great job. The Elf is seen above checking out the food, or was he. Maybe he was checking out the lovely  Susan. Elves need loving to.  It can get pretty lonely at the top of the world.

   

Let the feast commence. With Carol finalizing the dining table. Craig and Anita were about to fill their plates. A little bit of this and a little of that and and the line started to form. Above, once more, there's the Elf seen here with one of our newest members, Wilf. Don't be shy Wilf, fill your plate, trust me there is always to much food. And just so you know, always bring your appetite to our events. trust me on this.... Eating is a huge part of the BCCCB.

   

Boy, once the early birds walked through the house with their plates full, the others made their way to the buffet table. In a very orderly fashion the members of the BCCCB tried to make all the food disappear. Good luck with that. In the next picture we have the very lovely Sheila and Bonnie along with Francis and Bob Jardine chatting it up after their hardy meal.  Sheila has a tray of colorful cupcakes beside her. Have a cupcake cupcake.   .

   

The main course is over, now for desert, and what a spread. I should have been smart enough to bring a Sobeys bag to take a few treats for later. I wonder would anyone notice. In my defence to this idea, you had to see and taste what was set out before us. I mean really.... forget about diets tonight and for that matter, forget about eating tomorrow, as many of us left with a belly full. As for me.... I left with a tray full. There's that Elf again. Maybe I am the only one who sees him. Maybe he's a scout for Santa. Anyway he sure is running around the house, going room for room and hanging around the great people inside. I think he's reporting back to St. Nick. He appears to be talking to Carol above... but Carol, with a plate of food and a glass of wine I am thinking she only sees the great food and drink in front of her. 

   

Oh a cozy corner with an Italian guy and a beautiful blond. Candle light and some great food. Thinking meatballs and lasagne on the plates. Where is the Elf now? Plenty of desert left Wilf and Sandi, dig in. You don't have a Sobeys bag I could borrow do you?  The Carrot cake was to die for. Now ..... at 6'2'' 235 lbs I am ashamed to say that I tried everything, so Wilf don't be shy... I wasn't

   

Here we go... a couple of esteemed guests at the BCCCB Christmas Party, Norm (Normy) Connors and Ricky (Cousie) Cousins. Thinking.... Normy and Cousie having a chat by the tree, with nicknames such as these, perhaps they are Elves to be. Sorry,,, failed attempt at a limerick. Then from upstairs there arose such a clatter, we all turned to look, to see what's the matter. It's Santa ! With a hardy Hoo Hoo he descended from there, then across the room and into his chair.

   

With a sparkle in his eyes he checked out the gals. "Come sit on my lap" he said and tell me your tales. As Santa settled in Donnie who has an MGA, an MGB is now an MC. Donnie did an amazing job picking out awards, and from what I understand he had met with Barc and Carol to do up the awards list to those deserving. To tell the truth, all are deserving but with a limited budget, it can only be stretched so far. Job well done.

   

We haven't see the Elf in a while. I wonder did he go back to the pole, make his report and stay. Anyway.... Santa now has a captive audience and no one knows who's going to be called up to sit on Santa's knee. Thinking that there is a lot of worried people because they know if they are called up, I will put their picture up on this story.  As this portion of this even began, Donnie had the the task of giving the presidents speech. Our current Chairman and Co-chair had other more pressing plans and had to reluctantly miss tonight's gala so it was up to the past president to fill their shoes. Donnie spoke of the great year we had and of the great year before us. In 2014 the British Car Club of Cape Breton will be celebrating it's 10 anniversary and with many events in the planning stages, this will be the year to take a more active interest in this club. Be it a member who finds it hard to attend events or someone who has an old British Car and have though about joining this great club but have yet to do so... 2014 is now the time to get involved.

Let the awards begin. Haylett and Nina get the first gift of Christmas, an award for being so darn generous to us while on off island excursions. Oh.... and for offering up a nice warm bed to some of us weary travellers.  Next to our Baddeck Connection, Peter and Sandy Smith. Peter and Sandy host out Canada day Event and not only do they offer up their house and beautiful yard but Peter sees that the visitor information Parking lot is roped off for our Canada Day Car Show. Not only that, Peter also BBQs all the food. A very daunting task standing by the Q as the heat of July can get rather intense. So for all you do, Haylett, Nina, Peter and Sandy, a little token of appreciation.  

   

Next name called out! BOB JARDINE! Hoo Hoo.  Now before we get into the shenanigans of the photo, this award was for the efforts he and Bill MacDonald put into organizing our trip to the Magdalen Islands and P.E.I. this summer. It was an amazing trip and the story I wrote didn't do it justice for sure. Now for the photo. Bob was quick to jump up on Santa's lap. I am thinking he has never done this before. He started to tell Santa all he wanted for Christmas. I hope Judy had a pen ready because I think I heard overdrive transmission among other things. When Santa said yes, a huge hug followed. Judy... you can't let him down.

   

And the next name put a sparkle in Santa's eye. The ever charming Mary MacIsaac. As I take a second look at these photos I think Mary's eye sparkled a little brighter then Santa's. A few years ago, awards were started for those who refurbish, upgraded their cars. Making your car look and run good reflects on the club and in the case of Mary, well, with all the work going into this car she may soon have the best looking and best running car of the lot. In the past year countless dollars were spent on a roof, body job and now a new motor. A well deserved award for Mary. Sorry Mike... It is her car.  

   

Next up for an award is none other then the Italian Stallion himself, Joseph Renzi. Thinking Joe would rather sit on Misses Claus's knee, he stood beside Santa to accept his award. I am sure the award is for the Job he did on the stately looking  Sunbeam Alpine but to tell the truth I think it's for all the projects he has on the go. Now I have to say that I envy Joe's energy. In the past year not only did he complete the Alpine but there was a Ranger, Bugeye, transmission in a Volkswagen Beetle and for the past few months a very nice BMW sits in his garage needing attention. This all while buying and trying to sell furnaces and cooking for the Italian club. Geez... I am exhausted just typing all that. I am sure he yells from the garage for Jean from time to time to pump a brake peddle or something, Jean is never to far away to help. So another well deserved award. 

   

Who's next. Brian (the mad scientist) McKeigan. I am sure Brian can fix anything and after about... lets say 10 years, he finally fixed his MGA. Now there may be a little tweaking to be done on the A, we won't get into it but I think I had seen some of Arlene's thickest most expensive quilts covering the fenders as we leaned in to extract the engine of their amazing looking MGA. Hey Santa... Ever think of trying a ventriloquism act?

   

Next Francis and Bonnie's name was called. Francis yelled from the back of the room, "I don't trust Santa" so he sent the lovely Bonnie to sit on Santa's lap. Lucky for Santa. Francis was club bean counter since day one and I am sure Bonnie was by his side for all the counting. Francis decided it was time to step down and pass the the torch and I for one have to say thanks for the excellent work he had done over the years. There wasn't much counting to do but there was a lot of other stuff going on in the background, like paying our bills and keeping membership lists up to date. A little token of appreciation. 

   

The Elf is back! I knew they were a team! Looks as though Santa is giving the Elf a little rub behind the ear for a job well done. I think these two should take their act on the road.... What am I saying? Their act has been on the road for over a hundred years. They have a one night show, December 24th into the early hours of the 25th that plays all over the world. Seriously, Bill  English, "the Elf" gets this award for everything, or should I say, For Just being Bill. Where shall I begin..... For starters lets say club spirit. I am sure Bill has a tickle trunk of costumes and if you follow our stories you'll see a few. Most recently he dressed as a Viking and now an Elf. Now to tell a story of the true Bill English, it's a story that comes from P.E.I. You may have read it already but for a refresher... There was an elderly gentleman who came to the show field in PEI to see the cars. Big field and lots of cars. Bill sat the gentlemen in his MGB and drove him around the field to see the cars. This is the type of guy Bill the Elf English is. Bill, on this particular day not only made that gentleman happy but made his family very happy and made the BCCCB look great. One simple act of kindness goes a long way. Thanks Bill.

The season of Christmas is upon us and it's our last gathering for 2013. The 2013 driving season was amazing. There were such great destinations and club events filled with laughter and good times, just what this great club is about. 2013 had it's triumphs and tragedies that will forever change our great club but forge on we must. I joke with friends about how a morning smile will follow you all day. Well some days there is no morning smile, you have to look for it. As for me, I think of this great club and all our adventures. I even from time to time reread a story or two just to make me smile. This is a great club made up of some of the finest people I have ever met. If your searching for a smile, look no further then the BCCCB. I guarantee, we will put a smile on your face.

Once again events like this just don't happen. It takes dedication and support form members. Tonight's Christmas party was a huge success because of all who attended but a special thank you has to go out to a few. A few like Carol Miller for graciously opening up your lovely home and hosting this event.  A few like Donnie Peters for not only shopping for the awards but for standing in for our absent chairmen. A few like Bill English who dressed as the Elf and entertained through out the house. A few like John Inch who really made Santa Claus come alive tonight. And a few like all who brought food, helped serve, helped clean up and helped to make tonight what it was. We thank you.

In closing I have to say our signature Phrase...... If you weren't there you missed it. It will be a full year before this happens again. Come along next time.

MERRY CHRISTMAS

 

FROM ALL THE ELVES

 

 OF THE BCCCB