June 20th 2017: Crondall & North Wanborough

To adapt an old adage – if the musicians are comfortable, the dancers are hot. If the musicians take off their waistcoats then the dancers are melting! The evening started with temperatures around 30 degrees but cooled to a balmy 25 by the end. The good thing , however, was that it brought the punters out of the pub to form a captive audience for the Morris.

Plume of Feathers, Crondall

Dancing space here was limited but we avoided “chaos in Crondall” as the natives manoeuvred their large and precious vehicles past and around the set. Our Squire picked a set of relatively gentle dances which we survived with the help of a pause while the Squire danced a jig. Some rich dancers even bought a beer…..

A group of businessmen were scared away by the first dance but several neighbours came out of their houses to see what was going on and further swelled the audience. They must have had their windows open!

The Millhouse, North Wanborough

Again the heat had driven a large crowd to brave the midges and fill the car park. To make the most of the crowd we abandoned our usual lonely paved patio to dance in front of the outside tables. The grass was firm but the dramatic slope was a challenge. Putting the tallest dancers on the high ground was not a good idea in stick dances!

Although the venue is mainly a restaurant they do still have a creditable bar, selling a wide range of interesting beers to quench our larger than normal thirsts.

The programme was compact and not too taxing, especially for the more listless dancers who had reluctantly swapped a table out of view for one that was merely out of earshot. Some experienced dancers were away but our ranks were swelled by the ever enthusiastic Gareth, lately returned from foreign parts. Literally at the tenth hour Gunter completed his circumnavigation of a closed M3 to add a very welcome fresh pair of legs. A jig from Tom heralded a short break before a second short set.

We finished with the now traditional Shepherd’s Hey joining in dance. Several members of the audience joined in after degrees of cajoling that ranged from the casual to the downright persistent. Former YMM member Dave Bates had brought a table of family and friends along but every one of them claimed some sort of structural deficiency and sadly none were able to participate.

With the bagman absent and no immediate weekend engagements the only item for notices was a hearty cheer to thank the Squire for his excellent BBQ last Saturday. Maybe we can start another tradition?

It was not really a venue for a sing-song. However, we looked expectantly as Gunter reached into his bag only to pull out a handful of digital cameras. None of them produced a tune so we slipped away into the night……..

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