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Rotorua Branch Annual Report April 2015



This year was a steady as we go year for our group with me being away during part of 2014.

We had Fred Kanara who taught English in Jilin Province for several years for our May meeting just after our AGM. I was attending the National Conference during that weekend so missed his interesting experiences he had during his time.

In June we honored and discussed amongst ourselves trying to learn more about May Kingsford who generously left some money to our organisation to ensure that it continued. She, like ourselves, enjoyed the fellowship of such a diverse group of people. Because of he generosity we have been able to keep our subscription at the same level for many years and will continue to do so.

During the month of July and August I was overseas visiting family. Many enjoyed a Chinese lunch at Uncle Neil’s Restaurant and in August David Burt made a presentation about his endeavours with the Chinese people.

For our September meeting Ian Howit, from Hamilton Branch, supported by Willy and Anna Bow told us about their tour to Northern China. Ian’s presentation had a different twist with more emphasis on the Chinese cuisine as well as showing us the interesting places they visited.

In October WaitsuWu spoke to us about her upbringing in Taiwan and her experiences in New Zealand as an immigrant.

We held our end of the year dinner at Chopsticks in November. I think some were disappointed but I can say they can and do serve some very nice meals. Lei Lei’s Tai Chi class has had end of the year lunch there twice both being extremely beautiful and tasty. The cost being not to much different ! Maybe Norma needed to be Chinese ! Norma always does a great job in organising our group lunches and I am extremely grateful because it is not something I would relish in doing ! So a big thank you to Norma.

To start this year off we viewed the DVD that the Friendship Society remastered from an archival film “Inside Red China” It was interesting to see a little bit about China at that time even though it most likely was a little sanitised ! Some of us also celebrated the Chinese New Year with some of the Rotorua Chinese community at the Regal Restaurant in February. The Multicultural Association had brought down from Auckland a group of traditional Chinese musicians and other traditional artists such as opera performers. It was as usual a very enjoyable evening.

We ended our ‘year’ in March with and extremely interesting talk from one of our long standing members Robin Trewin about the growing of tea in Sri Lanka where he and his family spent 19 years experiencing life there. I am sure their family is richer from that experience.

We have had a few visitors to our meeting through advertising our meetings in the Daily Post and also hopefully they will become regulars to our meetings. We are always pleased to see new faces and hope our loyal members have made you all feel welcome and apart of our group. I would like to thank our hard working kitchen crew and others who help put the programme together and thank you all for the great turnout to our monthly meetings. I never cease to be amazed. Our visitors from Hamilton are always astounded at the numbers who attend our meetings. So thank you all for your loyalty and support which inspires us to continue on for another year.

Brenda Lee

Group Leader/Chair