Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Chess [...]

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Chess [...]

Article excerpt

AFTER 49 years of working, I have recently retired and I can now enjoy a range of activities in a way often previously denied to me because of the demands of the job. Don't misunderstand - I loved the work, my colleagues and other people that I met.

It was a good lifestyle, constructive, rewarding and worthwhile. I was ready to retire but not to give up those positive features shared by work and leisure, namely, an interesting, purposeful, varied and fulfilling lifestyle.

Last Thursday, I went bird-watching with a friend and, despite the drizzle, we had a great time seeing goldfinches, curlews, various waders and a fox.

On Friday night, I was at the chess club and the atmosphere was great. Some serious chess was being played but that didn't exclude some lighter moments, good conversation and learning. I played one of our aspiring juniors and enjoyed a good hard-fought game. I did manage to win but he has a real talent and has made dramatic progress over the past year.

His attitude is excellent and he is climbing up the ranking lists. My days of winning games against him are numbered and I am pleased about that.

It's great to see relative beginners to the game improving so much. Saturday night, I went to the Black Bull in Blaydon for the first time, it's a good pub and they had a excellent group, West Coast Band, playing.

Here, too, there was a good feel to the event with people together enjoying themselves and doing something creative.

Sunday, too, was brilliant. The Great North Run is just amazing. World-class athletes, club runners, joggers and next-door neighbours. The crowds, too, were tremendous.

It is the most dramatic display of togetherness. Then, of course Newcastle won - the club was rocking. The common elements are people working together to achieve something worthwhile.

It may surprise some people to learn that you will find that this atmosphere prevails in most of the local chess clubs. Yes, chess is usually a game played between two individuals, probably more so than many other games. Even in boxing where two protagonists face each other in the ring, the combatants get help and advice between the rounds. …

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