No committees, and no meetings!

It’s now been 16 months since we moved into our little lifestyle village, albeit with many reservations at the time of moving. We made a promise to ourselves – absolutely no committees, and we promised we wouldn’t attend any of the meetings. As anyone who has ever been on a committee will attest, it’s often a thankless undertaking, an undertaking that’s often associated with much bickering and squabbling, as can be the case with General Meetings too, sometimes subjecting the poor members to much angst and frustration.

The ordinary general meetings within the village have come and gone, without us attending. Last years Annual General meeting took place without us in attendance (much to the disappointment of more than a few residents who felt it was our duty to attend). We decided the price we would pay was to accept whatever was decided at any of the meetings without complaint, and that’s exactly what we’ve done. Everything has been going along brilliantly, and we’ve not had one complaint.

We participate in many of the events and activities in the village. In fact my life has become so full, both in and outside the village, that I no longer have any completely free days in a week We both play Bridge in the Busselton Bridge Club on Monday and Wednesday afternoons.

I play Majong in the village on Tuesday afternoons. Then there’s bowls in the village on Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays, and on Wednesday and Friday mornings I walk with my ladies walking group. Paul’s schedule is similar. Our calendars are full.

We love the special events, the dances, the occasional dinners, and things like Melbourne Cup day lunches. For my overseas readers who may not be familiar with Australia’s Melbourne Cup Race, it’s the horse race that stops the Australian nation, the biggest event of the year on the racing calendar.

Since Covid took the world by surprise though, I believe some of the special events within the village have diminished somewhat in both quantity and possibly to some extent, vibrancy, with the Melbourne Cup lunch being no exception. For this years event for the Melbourne Cup, a special lunch was scheduled in our main hall. The tables were booked, the menu organised, and people delegated to take care of the sweeps. The day was scheduled to commence at 10.30am. Most ladies would take the opportunity to dress up in their finest dresses with matching hats or fascinators as befits a big racing day. Most of the men would don a tie and possibly even a hat.

The sweeps would be organised, and the big screen lowered for the watching of the race. The day was to have prizes for best hat, best dressed lady, and best dressed gentleman. The race would run at 12 noon, after which we would all eat our lunch, and then the day would be over. A few weeks before the race, in a moment of madness I may add, I convinced Paul to assist me in adding some foot tapping entertainment for the afternoon by way of a music quiz. We approached the Social Committee with our idea, an idea which seemed to be very welcomed.

We organised our questions. Paul sorted out an app that would allow him to select a small segment of all the chosen songs on which our quiz questions were based – What’s the title of this next song? What’s the next line in these lyrics? What is this piece of music the theme song too, etc etc…. Paul worked out how to use the sound system to play the questions in the big hall, and had several practice runs in the quiet of our own home. We arranged people to collect and deliver the questions and answers for each round, people to mark the answers, and we arranged prizes. We had no idea how many people would stay on after the lunch.

I’m pleased to say almost everyone stayed on after the lunch and made a full day of it. Although some of the answers to the questions may have alluded some participants, the songs and music chosen, almost without exception was clearly well remembered. I noticed many a foot tapping in time to the music, and knew the purpose of our moment of madness in volunteering had well and truly been successful. Despite our nerves at getting up in front of a rather large audience, I think both Paul and I enjoyed our first real moment in the spotlight. I say first because……

Your remember I started this blog by saying we made that promise to ourselves – no committees. Well, as you’ve probably guessed – our little stunt of volunteering put us in the limelight. So much so in fact that before we were aware of what was happening, the current members of the Social Committee, many of whom had been looking to step down, seized upon the opportunity to snap up some new replacement members. Before we knew it, we had both been seconded to the Social Committee, and Paul also to the Residents Committee. By the end of the Melbourne Cup lunch it seems that not only are we to take our places on the committees, but Paul has been suggested for treasurer on the Social Committee, and I for president. (I’m not sure the suggestion of me to be president is that flattering actually, I think it’s more a recognition for my ability to be bossy! – yep that’s me, Miss Bossyboots). The Annual General Meeting is coming up soon, and that’s when I think the new committees will be announced. Of course, it’ll then be up to the committees to choose the roles for their members, and they may decide someone else will be more suited to being president or/and treasurer. Either way, it’ll be ok with me. Whether or not we’ll be regretting all this remains to be seen, but for now, speaking for myself, I’m finding it all rather exciting, and anyone who knows me well, will understand that. I love entertaining, especially I love organising fun times.

The existing Social Committee will continue on with their plans up to and including all the Christmas functions. The new committee with take over from there, starting with the New Years Eve dance. The entertainment has been booked, but we’ll need to organise the posters, tables, decorations etc for the night, and it’ll be up to us to ensure the night is a success. Wish us luck, I’ll let you know how it goes.

That’s not all though. Recently our ageing Bridge club called for new committee members, advising that the club was in danger of having to close if new members were not forthcoming. You guessed it – We’ve both put our hands up for that as well. So 16 months after our promise to ourselves – absolutely no committees, and no meetings, and now Paul is to be sitting on three committees, and myself on two. Our already busy lives have suddenly become even more busy. It’s all going to be a big learning curve, I hope we manage to do a good job.

8 thoughts on “No committees, and no meetings!

  1. Of course you both will do a perfect job on the committees. The old adage of a give a busy person a job and they will get it done holds true.
    Like you I kind of decided no more committees in retirement, but have ended up tutoring/chairing a writing class. You are wise to beware the politics of committees, although how anyone could have a problem with you is beyond my understanding.
    Enjoy it and don’t be afraid to step away if it goes pear shaped.


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