My first visit to the Melville was for a bridge lesson ( went with my In-laws and a family friend – just to make up the numbers). We didn’t have any idea about bridge – up until then we had only played partner whist.
The bridge lesson was led by Mr Paton – didn’t know his christian name as everything was very formal ( and sometimes scary) in those days (it’s still scary!).
He explained to us how to count our points and then a basic guide to the auction – and when the auction was complete you played the hand.
There we were playing out our very first contract – we suddenly became aware that Mr Paton was standing watching – he asked who declarer was and we all just looked up and there was silence – then the famous words – ‘ we appear to have four dummies’! He hadn’t actually explained that declarer would play both hands and the dummy cards would be face up on the table – we were just playing partner whist!!
Anyone that remembers Mr Paton will know that he was not renowned for having a sense of humour – but he absolutely did.