Well my dear Family and Friends in CANADA.

 I’m back!

Here we are in phase 2... second leg of Mike and Yvette’s East African Safari Celebration of their Golden Anniversary held at St. Ninian Place in Antigonish at 6.00pm according to the invitation.

After that wonderful Mass at the Monastery, we returned to Antigonish for what has been dubbed ‘The Party of the Century’ and I totally agree with this statement.

We were back at Chestnut Street by noon, and after a quick cup of tea, Mike’s and Danny’s cars were loaded with All the materials Yvette had prepared to create the ambiance of a truly East African Safari. I’m not going to describe the wonders of my sister’s creations. You’ll just have to see for yourself in the accompanying pictures herewith. We all worked from 1.00pm to 4.30pm, then rushed home to change and return to ST. NINIAN’S PLACE, the magnificent Church Hall, by 5.15pm, to await the arrival of the guests.

And, arrive they did, all one hundred of them, from 5.45pm onwards and were greeted by Mike and Yvette at the door. Each guest was given a name-tag, a Safari kit containing a passport with a map, a pencil, a book-mark onto which were attached a small Zanzibar sea shell and an East African wild life animal, the title of one of their favourite songs from 1968, some sweets for sustenance on the Safari, and a quiz with twelve questions pertaining to Mike and Yvette’s story in Kenya of 1967-1968....with the directive to ‘Use your eyes and walk about’.

You should have been there to see the response to that Safari quiz as everybody scanned the magnificent exhibit, and the tables that had the clues to the answers. The place was a-buzz with activity, whilst on the big screen, a slide show of the wild life of East Africa, accompanied by some authentic Swahili Songs, were shown only those who stopped to pause saw the slide show in the quest for finding the correct answers in the quiz. It was just so amazing, and I can hardly believe it at all. The ambiance was just superb.

Soon the secret was discovered, that each of the twelve tables sported a clue to the quiz questions, and then the Safari became more intense, and undoubtedly every one had all the right answers. Three Winners were declared by a lottery draw from the numbered passports containing the numbers 8, 6, 68 ... Mike and Yvette’s actual wedding date. Beautiful gifts were presented to the winners.

There were also table prizes for each of the twelve tables... a mug with Zanzibar sea shells, with a clue attached to it, and a live chestnut tree that Yvette had planted in preparation for the Anniversary soirée, from the chestnut trees that had been grown years ago when their son Joseph brought home some chestnuts he had gathered from the roadside as a school boy to add to his marbles and chestnut game he played with his friends in their garden, our garden, and which had sprouted and were planted by Yvette and Mike. These were the babies of thosechestnut trees in the Muise garden. Everything was of sentimental value.

Yvette’s banner of the SACRED HEART OF JESUS made by her in 1972 when they bought their home and dedicated it to the Sacred Heart, also stood in a place of prominence in the Hall as it had at the Monastery, for Yvette and Mike are ever so grateful for the many blessings that have been showered upon them during the past ‘50’ years.

And, if you look through the exhibit you will see, amongst the numerous framed photographic stories, a knitted ZEBRA BLANKET, A WILD ANIMAL CHESS SET, A ZEBRA-LEG WINE BOTTLE LAMP ... ALL created by my sister Yvette who, in my book , is ‘gifted’, and who, is fully supported in everything she does by her wonderful husband Mike whom our mother Laurie de Souza, called St. Michael. I salute them both in agreement.

Then, my nephew Joseph who was the emcee, called the assembly to order. He introduced everybody on behalf of his parents Mike and Yvette, and then called upon The Most Reverend Bishop Brian Dunn to say grace. I felt very honoured to be seated next to His Excellency Bishop Brian, and I thought how honoured Yvette and Mike must have been to have such a distinguished guest at their Golden Anniversary Celebration, together with other priests from the diocese of Antigonish, including Fr. Bill Crispo who had celebrated the Anniversary Mass that morning at the Monastery.

The meal, prepared by chef Nellie Cypher was out of this world with a magnificent sea-food chowder accompanied by bread rolls. This was followed by a roast-beef dinner with all the trimmings and wines to suit the palate. I could have had five bowls of that chowder and several more slices of that roast beef that could be cut with your fork, but her servings were more than filling to warrant that.

During the dinner all the wedding pictures together with their Kilimanjaro, wedding proposal love knot from the Nairobi Arboretum, the official engagement, and pictures of their schools and special interests including those of their honeymoon trip through sixteen stops in Europe, and then of their three babies and their weddings, and the six grandchildren, were shown.

The wedding pictures confirmed what Yvette and Mike had told me, that it was their school children all 85 of them invited to their wedding in Mombasa , who had made their wedding day so memorable, for they took over the entire proceedings from church to Club Hall  to car booth as you will see in the pictures. Mike and Yvette have dedicated their entire lives to teaching and educating the children of the world including their own. I’d say that both Mike and Yvette have made their mark in making this world a better place to live in. I am so proud of them.

I must add here a little of the accomplishments of their children. You would not get this information from the pictures or the speeches, so I am proudly adding this to my report gift.

Aleixo, their eldest is a medical doctor pediatrician, namely a GI specialist, Scientist, at Sick Kids Hospital and Professor at the Medical School of the University of Toronto, and even as I am writing this he is on his way to China for two weeks, to impart his knowledge of the innovative scientific researches in fighting gastro-intestinal diseases in children including new born babies via genetic implantations. I hope I am imparting this information correctly. Aleixo’s wife Debra Stein is also a medical doctor, namely a Psychiatrist dealing with refugees and displaced people. Aleixo and Debra have two children, Joseph 14, and Rachel 8, beautiful children who reflect the gentle spirits of their parents.
The second child is Anna Marie BSc. who is an Environmental Scientist with the Government of Canada, who began her career with the Montreal Protocol monitoring the depletion of the ozone layer in the atmosphere. This job took her to various parts of the world for conferences regarding this subject. Now she is involved with monitoring dangerous substances to be avoided in the homes and the environment.  I hope I have this correct too. Her husband is David Lewis who I think, works for Health Canada in mapping diseases across the country. David proposed to Anna Marie on the summit of Kilimanjaro in 2000. Anna Marie walked in her father’s footsteps in successfully climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Anna Marie and David have two beautiful daughters, Mikaela and Sophia aged 14 and 9....they are beautiful dancers and gentle spirits too.

Mike and Yvette call their third child their miracle baby,  Joseph MSc.Teaching, is a High School Physics and Biology teacher at St. Thomas More Academy in Vancouver British Columbia. Joseph is an avid astronomer and Ultimate Freezbie player and he has been able to infuse these interests in his students as well. His wife  Kelly MacDonald PhD. is a microbiologist and works part time at the University of British Columbia. They have two children, Patrick 8, and Heather 6. I’m sorry I didn’t get to meet them this trip, but in recording their pictures I can see that they are a bright and joyful pair like their Dad Joseph.

I must add here that Mike and Yvette were most honoured to welcome their godson Luke Coady Okafor and his family of Nigeria now living in Toronto, to their party. Mike and Yvette had looked after Luke for four months from the day of his birth way back in 1972 when his mother Regina RIP, was studying at the Coady Institute that year. Luke and his wife Cecilia together with their three children made a one night stop to Antigonish just to be there for Yvette and Mike. What a wonderfully special bond. He is truly their adopted son, as Yvette calls Luke.

That Mike and Yvette are most proud of their children and their families, is evident from the get-go. I too am proud of my nephews and niece and their families. I love them as my own.

I am so glad to have met them on this lovely occasion.

Then Mike and Yvette cut the Anniversary cake which was also in the Safari theme after which each of them spoke and took us back to the East Africa of 1967/68 where they met and were married. This was a true fairy tale romance that has lasted for half a century, with the next half in the making, in the presence of All their family and friends who were celebrating this mile stone Golden Anniversary with them. I feel truly blest and honoured to  have been completed there too.

The toast was raised by Mike and Yvette’s children, Aleixo, Anna Marie, and Joseph who saluted their parents with grateful thanks.

After the speeches and toast, the Anniversary Cake was served with ice cream and tea/coffee for dessert. Such a fitting taste of sweetness to end the dinner with!

Then the music began and I too had a brief chance  to sing and join Yvette, Anna Marie and Stephen and Jenn on the stage for a sing-song of some favourite songs,  and some dancing.

Thus ended a mega-party at 11.15pm and then operation clean-up kicked into gear as all of the exhibits had to be repacked and taken home that night.

I’ll never forget this wonderful three day gala 50th Anniversary event of my sister Yvette and Mike.

Now, I could have written pages more about this dinner party soirée, instead I’ll leave the pictures and videos to fill you in. I assure you that you will not be disappointed.

I’ll end by addressing this note to my sister and brother-in-law.



Can’t wait for the next party.  
Make it soon.Hope you like this my electronic gift.’

Love you All.

Your everloving brother Ben , together with my wife Betty and all our family who missed the ‘Party of the Century. ‘

Benny de Souza
Worcester Park Surrey
London England.

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VIDEO CLIP 3 M  &  Y - DINNER DANCE - BENNYS CANDID CAMERA MIX is now ready to watch. Please click on link below or on the photograph.  

Please click on the link below or on the photograph below to view full video clip, or click on the link below the photograph. Enjoy!!
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Mike and Yvette’s 50th anniversary East African Safari Game


Players were given a Safari Kit which contained a numbered Passport which included a map of East Africa and a 12 point quiz, with pencil, and some candy for energy whilst on Safari. One had to go through the entire exhibit to find the answers to the quiz , the answers to be selected from a three-point selection choice on the map, with the proviso that one used ‘one’s eyes’ and’ walk about.’ order to find the answers....and if all else failed , one’s ‘ears’ would hear the answers in the speeches delivered by Mike and Yvette

And,  If one was quite alert one would soon realize that each of the 12 tables set for the guests was a Safari stop as evidenced by the numbered info-cards that were set at each table. It must be noted that the quiz contained questions about Mike and Yvette only, for they were the Jubilarians.

Three Winners would be selected by lucky draw with the passports containing the numbers 8, 6, and 68 the wedding date of the hosts, for it was apparent that everybody had the correct answers by the time awards were to be given. Now everybody knows everything about Yvette and Mike.

Other gifts included table gifts of mugs containing Zanzibar shells; and also year-old chestnut trees grown by Yvette from the chestnuts off the trees in their yard, grown by Joseph their son from the chestnuts he brought home from his school travels when he was a child.

Everybody enjoyed the Safari, and learnt about the East Africa of Mike and Yvette’s world of 1968 and how they met and married before coming home to Mike’s homeland of Cape Breton Canada. That was 50 years ago !

The Safari was a great success. It was a smashing time.



 is now ready to watch.