Frank felt right at home in the entrance to the Belfast City Hall. Already on his world travels he's heard many of these words of welcome. He was here for an Abbeyfield reception to mark fifty years of Abbeyfield housing in Northern Ireland. This is safe and affordable housing for older folk where people retain independence yet have the benefits of housekeeping, security and the provision of meals.
However, Frank was a little overawed by the grandeur of the place and all the people that he found it very difficult to emerge from the security of the handbag. There was one bust of a lady who fought for women's rights in the city that really appealed to him.
The High Sheriff was the Councillor on duty today and he spoke very well to the assembled company of Abbeyfield residents, staff, friends and guests. Frank didn't feel that he could go up to him and ask for a photograph ....
There was quite a crowd at the luncheon.http://www.belfastcity.gov.uk/cityhall/index.asp
After the event .... since this is officially my day off .... I did a wee tour around taking pictures of windows, the Grand Staircase and simply enjoying the beauty of marble, carpet and the aroma of good coffee!
That was today really ... a fairly slow morning, an enjoyable Abbeyfield function and an afternoon catching up on some administration. Tonight is sermon writing time as tomorrow has become quite a jigsaw of booked appointments and meetings. And first thing in the morning Frank heads off to Mayo in the west of Ireland. He's got his new friend, the snowman, to keep him company on the next stage!
We checked out the map and all is ready! It has been a good time and I'm sure that I'll check in with his travels from time to time and probably keep in touch with his owner by e-mail! The internet has given us a very small world!
Lead us, heavenly Father, lead us
o'er the world's tempestuous sea;
guard us, guide us, keep us, feed us,
for we have no help but thee;
yet possessing every blessing,
if our God our Father be.
Church Hymnal number 652
James Edmeston (1791-1867)