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Yvie Burnett: If I mess up my Burns Supper speech, I’m toast!

Yvie confesses to never having paid much attention to the Burns speeches before.
Yvie confesses to never having paid much attention to the Burns speeches before.

This week I’m exercising my brain.

I know that isn’t going to shift any pounds, but I’ve realised that my grey matter isn’t as agile as it used to be.

I’ve been asked to do the Address to a Haggis at the Ivy Club Burns Supper in London and I’m regretting having accepted.

To be quite honest, between you and me, I’ve only half listened to it at Burns Suppers and usually just wish they would get on with serving the haggis!

It’s so hard to understand and it’s so long. There are far too many verses.

I’ve done the Reply to the Toast to the Lassies before which was also nerve-wracking because I had to make up a speech. I remember getting a bit of help from some of you readers.

The good thing about that, was that I didn’t have to learn Burns’ words off by heart.

Yvie isn’t really looking forward to giving her Address to a Haggis.

This time I’m realising that my memory isn’t what it used to be.

My job used to involve learning whole operas in foreign languages, sometimes even in Russian, and that was words and music too, so why am I struggling with a bit of Burns?

I think that may have something to do with my age. I think a whole Russian opera may be a bit of a struggle nowadays.

Anyway, hopefully I won’t embarrass myself. I’m counting on the room being full of lots of English people who haven’t a clue what’s going on and lots of nice Scottish ones who realise how difficult it is!

I’ve been saying the words to myself any time I get a free minute. Which means I’m getting a few funny looks. This morning I thought I was alone in the dentist’s waiting room, but she had come in to get me. Thankfully I’ve known her for years, so it was easy to explain what in the world I was doing!

So what are we talking about this week? Surprise surprise, it’s still good old Boris.

How much longer will Boris Johnson be at Number 10?

Did he or didn’t he walk into a drinks party in his garden and think it was a work meeting? Were there any laptops there? Most of us wouldn’t get much work done if we were asked to bring our own booze.

It’s like a stuck record. Every night on the news we hear the same thing. You all know my views on this, so I don’t need to tell you them again.

And as for the report by Sue Grey. Get a blooming move on, Sue. There either were parties or there weren’t.

Maybe by the time you read this she will have finished her homework.

Of course, Prince Andrew has been helping Boris by claiming a few of the headlines and distracting us from Downing Street parties.

Ranvir Singh’s documentary on ITV this week made it clear that whether or not Prince Andrew is guilty of the alleged assault, he is most definitely guilty of keeping very strange company for a member of the Royal Family.

The ITV documentary claimed Prince Andrew spent a lot of time with Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell.

The programme showed evidence of him being aboard private jets with Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell and frequenting various homes of theirs around the world. It also told us of a strangely spoiled man whose teddies had to be laid on his bed in a certain order to avoid him shouting at staff.

But just because he comes across as a bit of an arrogant, unlikeable man doesn’t mean he is guilty of any crimes. This story will run and run, but let’s hope the truth eventually comes out.

I’ve always preferred Prince Edward personally, having met him first of all at Haddo House many years ago and then subsequently at various events.

Yvie meeting Prince Edward at Chelsea Physic Garden, in London. 

Anyway, how are you all this week? Has anyone asked you? Has anyone texted you?

Monday was Blue Monday, and yes that’s just a bit of a gimmick because it’s when everyone is back at work, they are getting their Christmas credit card bills, the weather is rubbish and it’s a long time until spring cheers us up, but it really is a depressing time of year.

I’ve arranged to have lunch with two different friends next week and I’m hoping to see a couple of others for a coffee.

Let’s just check in with our friends to see if they are OK.

Finally, congratulations to Brenda Bryce who will receive a copy of Sandy Thomson’s book. Thanks again Sandy.

Have a good week,
Yvie x

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