Sunday, August 23, 2009

Salt Spring Island 17th Annual AA Rally - Friday

17 years ago some Salt Spring AA members and their friends decided to put on a rally which would celebrate the distinctive experience of Islanders. They had no idea it would grow into what it's become or that it would continue with increasing popularity as people come from all over Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands, the American San Juan Islands, Vancouver and Frazer Valley and further parts of Canada and the US. This year they even had a visitor from Japan. The theme of the meeting was "Complete Abandon" referring to the idea in AA that a person who has completely abandoned his or her life to Alcohol will get his or her life back by completely abandoning himself or herself to a Higher Power. This can be anything but alcohol and usually begins with the program of AA and grows to a loving God.
Mike B was the Friday night speaker and what an extraordinary speaker he was. Growing up in California during McCarthyism he shared 'it was a time when the majority of Americans wanted 20 million or so other americans mom and dad weren't we moved to Mexico....later when I began to drink it made me feel....well....Repubublican." Hundreds of us filling the hall laughed and cried as he took us forward through time. "My friend phoned and said I had to try something. It was 1965 and he gave me LSD 25. I vaporized and probably met some of you in a distant galaxy. However when I returned to earth it was to find myself naked surrounded by 4 uniformed cops." Things didn't quite turn out as he hoped and eventually like so many when alcohol no longer seems to work he was one of the fortunate ones who found his way to AA and stayed. After that his life became what it is today, beyond his wildest dreams with success he'd never of imagined because he felt fortunate he'd not ended up in jail. When he finished the room exploded with applause as everyone gave him a standing ovation. The meeting closed with the Serenity Prayer.
Our group was famished so we headed into town in Brian's Pathfinder and found gastronomical heaven in Moby's Marine Grill. We had lamb steaks and lamb burgers and some of us wished they had lamb steaks or lamb burgers because those of us who did moaned with the greatest pleasure. However they did insist their beef burgers and salads and such were almost as delicious. KC Kelly was promoting his record Wild Card with gorgeous island women dancing up a storm to his raw island blues. A truly memorable night of food, friendship, and fun!

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