Burns Conference Annapolis 1983
Leaving Prestwick airport on 18th August at 1 pm we arrived at JFK New York at 7.30 local time to be driven to St Johns College arriving at 2.45 am local time. We were greeted by our host’s members of the Robert Burns society of Annapolis and after some refreshments we got to bed about 6am.
We were up for breakfast at 8am and spent the day meeting new friends and renewing old friendships. We went into the town of Annapolis and had lunch and returned to the College for dinner and finished our day with a party.
Breakfast and then the business meeting at which Wilson Ogilvie was elected J.V.P. After lunch we were invited to the Fleet Reserve Club which looks on to Chesapeake Bay and was open for the use of Bursians for our time there. In the evening we attended the Tartan Ball held in a magnificent hall. After dinner the formalities were conducted with George Anderson handing the Presidents chain to Tom McIlwraith followed by speeches from the Mayor.
Attended an open air service in the grounds of the College and then we had lunch. In the afternoon we went into Annapolis and after dinner in the evening we went to the Fleet Reserve Club.
Went to Southern Maryland and visited an early American church. Then a tour of an atomic power station and finally tobacco fields and stores and in the evening a concert followed by a party.
We went to Washington DC and visited the White House and the Lincoln Memorial then an Aero Space Museum was far too much to see in a day.
Many of the delegates were leaving Annapolis to travel to other parts of America and Canada. After many farewells to friends and singing of Old Lang Sine George and I stayed on in Annapolis. We were approached by Mrs Boatman, a leading member of the committee, inviting us to stay at her house for the remainder of our stay. Later that day we attended an audience with the Governor of Maryland Mr Harry Hughes. We returned to the Boatman’s and then went in to town for a night out.
We went shopping had lunch and then visited the Naval College and John Paul Jones Crypt. We met Ishbell McKenzie from Strachur, who ran a shop in Annapolis, and were invited to go sailing in Chesapeake Bay. Later we went to the Fleet Reserve Club and after a drink and blether went home to bed.
John Dodds invited us to join him for breakfast and a visit to his building sites and then to dinner with him and his wife Carol. We later went sailing on the river Severn and in Chesapeake Bay.
We were driven to Baltimore to visit the Town and see the historical Fort McHenry
We attended the Church Service at the Naval College with 2000 midshipmen, in traditional uniforms, singing old Scottish hymns. Breakfasted at Officers Club and went sailing. At night we had a barbeque and a sing song.
All day at the Fleet Reserve Club and an early bed for both of us.
We went to a private yacht club and went sailing on a 30 foot luxury yacht with Dr. Wilson a retired USN commander and Mr Montgomery. Dined on board and after 5 hours sailing we returned to the Club and showered and changed for dinner. Drank Grandads (a cocktail) and ate crab (local delicacy). We spent the rest of the night drinking and talking.
George was not well too many Grandads and crabs I went shopping and later we went to a farewell dinner at John Dodds.
We met up with the delegates and said our fond farewells to our hosts. Travelled to JFK airport and home to Scotland.
George Anderson and I had a wonderful time in Annapolis meeting new friends and renewing old friendships and witnessing Burn’s hope ---"that man to man the word ower shall brothers be for aw that"