(KE) Today is a very special day for me as I have been invited by the “UPCA – The United Pipe Clubs of America”- and their President Michael Garr on behalf of the World Federation of Pipe Smokers – “CIPC Comite International des Pipe Clubs” to speak to you and convey to all American Pipe Smokers hearty greetings from the French CIPC President Alain Letulier.
My name is Kurt Eggemann, President of the VDP Federation of the German Pipe Smokers, which was founded in 1971, and of the First Pipe Club of Cologne, founded in 1979”.
In the 1960s many pipe smokers got together and formed local Pipe Smokers Clubs. From then on they cultivated the social gatherings with like-minded friends. They enjoyed extending their world of pleasure over smoking a good pipe with excellent pipe tobacco while also talking about politics, sport and the world on the whole. Over the years members of different clubs visited one another and thereby formed regional and international friendships and clubs. This involved a lot of travelling all over Europe. In 1971 Germany was ready to once a year organise a get-together of all the different clubs rotating in different towns and so formed a championship under the title “National Master of Slow Smoking”. This enticed a lot of pipe smokers to come along and so it came about that under the heading of “The Slowest Will Winn” a great social event for interested and real pipe smokers resulted and this in turn meant it was an Olympian goal to take part. Until this day it has become a very important day for everybody that travels for “Pipe and Tobacco”. Who thought that this only applied to one country was wrong; in almost all European countries, and even the whole world, pipe smokers pulled together and at least once a year they get together to take part in a World Championship, European Championship or World Cup in Slow Pipe Smoking and on those occasions meet up with friends again. National Championships had similar results.
The World Federation CIPC was founded in 1970 with the aim of getting together internationally with other friendly pipe smokers all over the whole world.
During these events, earlier national and international championships became more and more popular and it was up to the delegates to ensure that friendly relationships amongst founder countries and later new countries would be brought together, hold discussions, co-ordinate dates and make rules for slow pipe smoking. This, we now know, has all contributed to successfully hold large pipe smokers events.
During the last years up to 400 pipe smokers, men and women attended World and European Championships.
Whoever took part in the many countries of Europe, the USA, Mexico, Japan and other will not forget this and will like to come again.
Even though, in the early stages of the slow smoking pipes, people smiled and thought this was not a real pleasure and should not be taken too seriously. However, in me and pipe smokers around the world, it confirmed the belief that the main reason was to meet friends and smoke a good pipe with them.
This year the World Cub for teams will take place on 13.10.2013 in Poznan, Poland. On behalf of Henryk Rogalski and our Polish pipe smoking friends may I extend a hearty invitation to you to take part in this large pipe smoker’s event of 2013 in Poznan, to meet friends and slow smoke a good pipe.
That this has become very important has been confirmed to us again and again. Of course we as VDP and pipe smoker are seriously thinking about the future and how to proceed from here. The No-Smoker Legislation is gaining grounds and also in our area of Nordrhein-Westfalen. We don´t really need this Legislation, as we have long learned that the motto “Smoking Allowed” at no time applied to us pipe smokers and to be considerate towards others in restaurants was obvious. I could continue with examples, but this will not take us further. Therefore, I will continue to find a quiet spot where I can smoke my pipe. I have not as yet come across a “real” pipe smoker who has given up his favourite topic of pipe and tobacco despite the changing Legislation.
On that note and in order to cultivate the age old Pipe and Tobacco Culture and to maintain old friendships may I advise you of a date of a large event of CIPC.
The VDP and the First Pipe Club of Cologne were given the go-ahead during the Portuguese Estoril gathering to hold the World Championship 2014 in Cologne/Germany and for which we already have a date the 12. October 2014. Please come and visit us.
I would like to wish the Chicago Pipe Show 2013 in Saint Charles the very best.
Relax with your pipe
© Kurt Eggemann, translation German - English by Elke Franklin)