WITH JEAN-PAUL BERNARD THE FOUNDING PRESIDENT!
On the same evening that we sailed from Savona, in the ship’s ‘Osiris’ theatre which was filled to the gunnels, after a performance of very physical and energetic dance routines by the Costa Mediterranea’s own dance troupe, was held the opening ceremony of the 26th Annual Conference; the event was slightly scaled down because the usual parade of the delegations could not take place. But despite this the parade was in everyone’s minds!
Presented by Emilija Nikolovska et Bob Braun, President Klaus Enengl, with his captain’s cap on his head, took delight in welcoming those present, especially Jean-Paul Bernard, the founding president in 1988 when he headed up the Strasbourg Hotel School. Klaus Enengl recalled his four years at the head of the AEHT since his election in Dubrovnik and taking in Lisbon, The Hague and Ohrid/Skopje as well as the present cruise; he also recalled the creation of the Youth Parliament which took place in Austria and Iceland.
‘I should like to thank all those of you who have enabled me to fulfil my mandate. I am proud of our superb Association. Many thanks to the COSTA company and to its on-board team who have at every moment met our expectations. Thanks also to all the Presidium members as well as to my colleague Heimo Neu and especially to Louis Robert and Nadine Schintgen, to the treasurer Hans Russegger, and to the judges who have agreed to be part of the competition judging panels. Thanks also to the Barcelona and Marseilles hotel schools who have provided students to guide us around their cities. And finally, many thanks to all of you who have come here, sometimes travelling great distances, to take part in this celebration. I wish you a good and enjoyable week. Enjoy!
Then came the roll-call of the national delegations, who stayed in their places but each time stood up to introduce themselves and to enjoy the loud applause and joyful whistling. The delegations were called in the following order:
Armenia, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, (Latvia, Lituania), Luxembourg, Macedonia, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States.
Jean-Paul Bernard, who had been invited to address the assembly, gave a very brief speech to express his great pleasure at being present and to remind us that the European Idea had been foremost in his mind when he created the AEHT together with his deputy Martin Bruder; he wished all those present an excellent week’s conference.
Working in harmony, President Klaus Enengl and Vice-president Louis Robert took the floor to make various announcements and to give special information regarding the arrangements for the cruise, especially regarding the competitions which were different from previous years; they urged the participants to be punctual and reminded the assembly that the AEHT headquarters was in cabin 8262.
And finally, in a good-natured throng, came the distribution of the ‘25th Anniversary Polo Shirts’, handed out by the Presidium team and by Marco Esposto of la Casadelladivisa, which had provided this much appreciated souvenir!