Thursday, 25 December 2014

Distant Exiles can have their say

To all Cherry Chimes readers and fans of AFC Bournemouth - Happy Christmas!

I was sent a kind email by an AFCB supporter living in Israel this week and he has asked me to see if other Bournemouth exiles living in far off places would send in an article about their memories of watching the Cherries, so that we could post one story every  two weeks or one a month from the Distant Exiles on Cherry Chimes.

I think it is a great idea but I would need you foreign exiles to start emailing me stories like this to  - I can't write them for you. If it is popular I'll give Distant Exiles their own column on the blog. 

Here is what Jonathan Baker had to say - perhaps you remember standing next to him in the South End.

I live in Tel Aviv, Israel and have done so for 18 years. Raised in Bournemouth and attended Bournemouth School for Boys, in my younger days myself and a group of friends were regulars in the South End and occasional visits to the main stand, when the old man was paying. 

During the 1986-89 seasons we travelled home and away to matches watching Harry and the Lads, a long coach journey to Old Trafford sticks in the mind for an FA Cup draw and an away fixture at Fratton Park against Pompey ,driving the 52 miles in an open top white Triumph Herald on a glorious day. 

In 1990 after completing my A Levels I took a year out and spent the year in Israel before returning to study at UCL. During my gap year the gulf war broke out and I spent the 6 weeks of the war being bombarded by scud missiles from Iraq. I am telling you this not to brag about my bravery but that I have a photo of me at 3am in a sealed room against chemical warfare, me fitted with a gas mask wearing.... Yes my Bournemouth scarf to keep warm as it was a cold January night.

Jonathan  with his scarf and gas mask in Jerusalem, Israel..
I'm glad we don't all have to wear a mask like that
for home games, although I am going to Millwall on Sunday!
The past two seasons under Eddie and Jason have been incredible and we are now experiencing something very special with promotion to the most exciting league in the World is attainable. In Eddie we trust and he will deliver. Supporting the Cherries from overseas is made easier by Kris and Willo weekly gracing the radio waves and the Facebook and YouTube updates put out by the club. So it just leaves me to say Shalom from Israel and Boscombe back of the net!Lastly, in my office I have an away shirt the black one from last season signed by Eddie and framed, it was from our away game at the Riverside and worn by one of our subs. UTCIAD!

Come on Distant Exiles, Cherry Chimes would love to hear from you. Let us know what lengths you go to to keep in touch with AFCB while you are abroad - I'll need at least six entries to make it a regular feature so come on be one of the entries.

Just to inform you of the countries outside the UK where Cherry Chimes is read most. In the last month some people in Indonesia and Bangladesh have been logging on, which is a little surprising! But here is a list of the top following places where there must be many AFCB fans who like to follow the team via this blog.

1. USA
2. Germany
3. France
4. Ukraine
5. Australia
6. Russia
7. Ireland
8. China
9. The Netherlands
10. Spain
All Departments has a special Christmas podcast with Steve Fletcher. Find out why it took three-quarters of last season to prepare for Callum Wilson's signing. Listen by visiting the All Departments' website or by scrolling down the side panel on Cherry Chimes until you reach all departments and click on the sound bar.

Happy Christmas! Now to open some presents.

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