• Edinburgh

     

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    Last week, I spent a couple of days in the magnificent city of Edinburgh.

    The picture above of Edinburgh castle was taken from the breakfast room of the hotel that we stayed in.

    I may be a little biased in that my Dad comes from that neck of the woods, but Edinburgh is a fantastic place to visit.

    Every August the city and its environs host the Edinburgh International Festival and its unruly, less high brow, younger brother, the Fringe.

    The Fringe has comedy, pop art, kids shows – pretty much anything goes.

    Every theatre, gallery, library, book shop, pub, cafe and broom cupboard becomes a venue.

    The Fringe is now the biggest festival of its kind in the world.

    Also during August, Edinburgh is host to the Military Tattoo, which is what I go to see.

    I will post about the tattoo separately, but it is an event that should be on every bucket list, in my opinion. Simply awesome.

    The city itself positively throbs with visitors from near and far.

    Bars, restaurants and cafes are full to overflowing from mid morning until long after dark.

    For my trip, the sun was out, the winds were down and Edinburgh could have been a southern European city.  The party spilled out from the hostelries onto outdoor terraces and decks. It was gorgeous.

    With one exception, the businesses of Edinburgh welcomed us with open arms.

    August is, I’m sure a bonanza for the hospitality industry.

    Everybody is excited, having fun and looking to have a good time. We ate, we drank and most of all we laughed.

    Stuart LennonI was travelling with my wife, her cousin and her husband. (We are in the picture right) We met up with my cousin and her man. (That’s them below on their trusty steed)

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    We laughed until our sides ached.

    Where is your favourite city?

  • No Dickheads

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    I posted last week about a Golf Day that I attended – BattleBack versus Rugby’s Golf Club.

    Once the golf had finished, we repaired to Tedworth House, a Help 4 Heroes Recovery Centre, for a spot of dinner and a charity auction.

    I bought the print above. The original (complete with signatures of many famous sports and media folk) was presented to Welsh Rugby legend Cliff Morgan on the occasion of his retirement.

    One hundred prints were countersigned by the man himself to be used for charitable purposes.

    Now I have one in my house. This makes me feel inordinately pleased with myself. My wife is, for the moment, reserving judgement.

    Rugby’s Golf Club relates to the game of Rugby, not the place. It binds people with interests in Rugby, Golf and doing good. Jason Leonard is the club President.

    After dinner – one of our number stood up and spoke about The Rugby Business Network. His name was Colm Hannon.

    Colm, like me, played prop. Unlike me, he was good at it.

    Colm played professional rugby in Ireland, England and South Africa. I daresay that he made a pretty decent living.

    Post Rugby – he identified a need for something like The Rugby Business Network and went out and set it up. Good on him.

    He presented to us what it is and what it is for.

    I may get a word or two wrong, but I’m sure that he will forgive me;

    “Essentially there is one criterion for membership. Officially we say that at any RBN event you must say “How can I help you?” – but unofficially, it is much simpler.”

    “No Dickheads.”

    If you played Rugby, then I suspect that you understand the nuance.

    Certainly many in the room nodded their understanding, although of course, this may have just been people nodding off as the wine took effect.

    I have a feeling that Jason Leonard knows exactly what it means and I am sure that Cliff Morgan would have too.

    No Dickheads means team first.

    Your teammates come before all else. No ego. No bullshit – not on the field, not off the field.

    If there is anything that anyone takes away from the game of rugby – then it is this. (And a lot of very imaginative and graphic song lyrics)

    In many ways, it is a good maxim to live by – in business, in sport, in everything.