My previous posts should indicate how much I value, support and encourage local branches. However, love them as I do, there is no denying there is something "unique" about the people who willingly give up their evenings to serve on a committee.
Tonight's meeting was a perfect example. Fourteen people hunched in their coats in a freezing cold room. There was to be a branch meeting immediately followed by the AGM - two for the price of one! Unfortunately, the Chairman was a bit confused, and went through the AGM agenda first, so by the time we actually reached the AGM everything had been discussed. This, however, did not stop us going through the whole thing again, just to repeat what was previously agreed.
The meeting was then sidelined into a long and at times heated discussion about parking, with the committee's two Grande Dames sparring for the upper hand - somewhat akin to Lilly Savage 'v' Ruby Venezuela. I allowed myself to drift off into my thoughts, only to be snapped back to reality when I heard "the Purple Pumpkin has a lot to answer for, and if it isn't addressed death my ensue". I have no idea what the Purple Pumpkin might be or why it might cause death, but when I find out I will be sure to let you know...
Tonight's was the 18th branch AGM of the season. Last week I endured a ten minute discussion about whether the Chairman could sign the minutes using a pen with green ink. As the row raged, one of the ladies on the committee leaned across to me and said, "don't write off us old ones, we have a copy of the Kama Sutra you know." Then, just in case her words hadn't sufficiently shocked me, she added, "and it's very well thumbed." It is not often I am totally lost for words.
At another meeting a 76 year old female councillor, with a touch of the Hyacinth Bucket about her, reported on a recent planning inspection visit to a building which had, until recently, been used as a brothel. Without a hint of humour or understanding of what she was saying, she informed the committee that one of the rooms had a 'splendid mirror affixed to the ceiling." She had apparently asked the planning officer what it was for, to which he replied, "perhaps it was a lady's dressing room and the mirrored ceiling was to enable the user to check her hat and hair were neat and tidy before leaving the house." As the more earthy members of the committee exchanged wide eyed glances, she added, "I thought it was quite a good idea, so I have phoned my odd-job man to see if he could fit a smaller version for me. It will be a Godsend with my arthritic neck."