Great things, great moments and

Derek Allan.
Derek Allan.

Northumberland Musician Derek Allan continues his personal diary.

November 11

The car was still stuck near Bedlington and Shaggy took it to a garage, he had it towed with help from a friend called Terry and the day was saved. The garage was shut for 4pm so we could not get it once it was fixed and we lost the night’s gig at Wingate.

The organiser, Ian Campbell, sent another player in our place and I stayed at home a little poorer, but a film and board games night was perfect.

November 12

Today I mostly tried to not work so much as we are getting no replies for gigs.

Christmas plans are now being made by venues so we will have to wait until the new year before we can crack on further.

Sometimes a venue decides upon a Christmas or new year gig at the last minute, or perhaps someone has to pull out with the never ending illness going around effecting many people if not all of them at some point.

Singing is not easy with these chest and throat infections.

The gig in Alnmouth tonight was good fun, a few barking dogs joined in and we shared a happy few hours. Mike Slaughter came and played.

This was the venue he joined us at a few years ago when we toured Texas so he could have a little stage time before meeting us for a few dates on tour.

Shaggy was ill and had been in bed all day, he only managed to get up at 7pm to come and do the gig!

November 13

We went to the MetroCentre and bought a few things, mostly it was to buy pyjamas to wear on our trip to The Polar Express train ride in Weardale.

We have been to every one since it started, five years in total, and it just gets better.

The mugs to keep and collect are perfect, and the gift from Santa is too. We have a lot to do over Christmas and winter time. We start early to try and fit it all in and add a little magic to as many people as we can.

I love being with people all loving the winter months together, making the dark cold nights warm and bright.

For me the longer I do it the less chance sadness has of returning.

The charity 24-hour darts marathon is set up and Melanie will start advertising it. It will be held at Dinnington Social Club in January and will be with Sam Gibson and anyone else that would like to go and throw a dart.

A few decades ago I realised that if you live long enough you will be ill at some point and need help.

I hate knowing and seeing people being ill, so rather than wait until we are personally affected I like to try and help now.

Some of the illnesses in our lives could be gone forever with a little more money.

The next charity is for The British Heart Foundation. I have lost friends and have friends that have lost family and I find it hard to deal with.

I know a lot of people, it is inevitable that I will lose many friends. I would like to help friends and strangers beyond my own life. People should help people, we have to live this life together.

November 14

Ellie has another check at the hospital and she is all fine, she has had a bad chest for a long time. Exercise and fresh air they want for her and this is something we love too.

We took cards and a cricket ball and did around eight miles with a tea stop.

We talk and see so much from what looks like only a few fields to a passing car.

It is always an adventure but even more so when you are little. I like making memories for their future and I hope I am a good memory along with our home Northumberland.

Because I do not drive I