Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Mr Saxon goes to Poole: Saturday Evening " really rather different"

Setting out from the chapel, I was determined to follow some of the others as based on my experience in poole the previous night, I wasn't sure if the satnav would not have another problem and this plan worked quite well ( even if I would have given anything to have a passenger to talk too)

However after a badly timed light, I lost the people in front of me which I didn't think would be a issue. But I then became aware that several people had, had the same idea I had but instead were following me! Which was not a comforting thought as I was dependent on the talking little box that had not been proving to be the most dependable of electronic gizmos that weekend!

Fortunately it decided to play nice and got me to the right destination. Meeting up with some of the others from the convention we headed to the waterfront. Now, it's often said that it is easy to pick out church members in a crowd and this was certainly true that night, as we were in a major town on a Saturday night. Plus there was the not so small fact that several people were dressed up in fancy dress. Even Fraggle who was dressed up as jimmy saville, which due to later events ( which if you haven't been living under a rock you will know about ) is probably the last time he will ever dress up like that.

Now I had heard about the "boat" from a previous year so was somewhat looking forward to the trip, and it was a big boat. Even so, I moved to bag a seat on the top deck pretty quickly as it wasn't what you could call a large deck.

Being in a good mood ( and that I hadn't really mentioned to anyone what I was up to that weekend) I decided to have some fun by updating my facebook status update to say words to the effect of " In a change to my usual Saturday night, I am now on a boat"  and didn't say anything else which prompted a great response from one of my friends from work of
" Wait... what???"
he, he, he, he.

I later confused her even more by sending a text message later on that night when we were out to sea ( there was general amusement from people when we found there was phone coverage but no internet access. However would we update facebook :-) by saying "you've heard of snakes on a plane well this is a text from a boat". Her response was somewhat to the point
" All right just what the heck are you up too?"

The trip was a wonderful night, most people spent the night below decks as there was a dance floor, but despite dancing the previous night therew as no way I was going to try dancing on a boat. Besides being out to sea was giving me the opportunity for some fantastic photo opportunities and a sunset that was just awe inspiring; Plus it gave me a chance to talk to some members of the "canon club". And by this I mean that as the average age of the attendee's was somewhat higher then a YSA conference it was reflected in our choice (plus what we could afford of course)  of gizmos and gadgets. Namely a lot of DSLR's, spilt between canon and nikon, hence the canon club and the nikon club.

The president of the canon club ( by virtue she had the best model) proved to be a lot of fun as we spent a lot of time pointing out opportunities to each other for great shots and taking tips from each other. And we both got dozens of great photos of such a awe inspiring sunset . However as soon as the sun went down, it got cold, fast!.

However in another one of those " I really can't believe that just happened/ no one will believe this moments) one of the two ladies who had come back to use my B&B came up to the top deck and satdown, complaining it was cold and suddenly sat down next to me, moments before cheery from earlier reappeared and she came over to say hello. I introduced her to Roch ( the code name for one of the ladies who came back), she asked how she knew me and roch responded that I was one of the ladies who I had taken back to my room, at which point cheery laughed and said well she had got me first by necking with me and sat down on my knee and put her arm round my shoulder in order to keep talking to me and roch.. My first thought was, well this is cosy and my second thought which just made me giggle was, without a picture there's no way anyone is going to believe this.

There was also a attempt to launch several Chinese lanterns, which due to high winds proved ( if you pardon the term) a rather damp squig as even with using a whole box of matches in one go, the lanterns would not stay lit. In the end the two which did light only proved to have a few seconds of flight before being promptly blown into the sea.

The end of the evening ended with me making friends with a group of girls who were primary school teachers, and it was half way through talking with them that Fraggle appeared and I realised to my general astonishment I was actually introducing somebody to him.

But it wasn't long after this I was finally driven below decks by the rapidly dropping temperature. Whilst watching the port approach through one of the side "openings" ( I can't think of a better word right now) I reflected on the weekend and I realised that I was really, really happy. Yes it had been a radical change for me to come so far to a activity and yes it could have backfired. But it hadn't, it hadn't at all. In fact it had really buoyed me up ( one of my friends at work would later comment she hadn't seen me in such a good mood for long time)

By the time I eventually got back to the B&B and climbed into bed, I was feeling very tired but a good kind of tired I hadn't felt since the last YSA conference.

It was proving to be a good weekend.

Mr Saxon goes to Poole: Saturday later afternoon" It's just a weekend of firsts"

Of course the downside of using Satnav is it takes a little while for it to boot up and then figure out where it is but at least it beats trying to drive and read a piece of paper.

But whilst I was waiting for my satnav to boot up, after coming back up from the beach two of the ladies attending the convention waved at me as they passed and offered to let me follow them as we headed to the local meeting house for the evening bbq.

When we arrived I was unsurprised to find and I'm sure any church member will be also unsurprised to hear who was helping with preparing the bbq.

Why the missionaries of course ( it doesn't matter where you go in the world, you go to a church do with food, the elders are sure to appear.)

The two ladies, who shall hence forth be referred to as speed up and laugh a lot ( yes I know I'm struggling for nicknames but c'est la vie) were heading into the chapel when they heard a piece of news that horrified them after afternoon at the beach getting covered in sand and salt. There were no showers!! Quite why they though there would be, I have no idea unless they have a exceptionally well equipped home chapel, but as they were staying with a local church member they had no way of getting one before the evening's trip.

" that's no problem, my B and B is just round the corner you could come there and use my shower". Wait, I thought who just suggested that? Oh wait that was me? There was one of those drawn out moments where I realised what I had just said. I had technically asked two women I had only just met to come back to my room! ( i know I had considered this weekend to be getting out of my comfort zone and doing things I wouldn't usually but I mean come on!)

At which point the two women expressed what can be best described as undying gratitude and immediately wanted to go there straight away.

Leaving the chapel we passed fraggle who was somewhat surprised that we seemed to be leaving straight away and wanted to know where we were going to. One of the girls cheerfully announced that I was taking the two of them back to my room.

The look on his face was really rather funny.

So guiding them back  to my B&B I quickly found out that they had come even further then I had. It seems that a lack of mid singles events in the uk is prompting people to travel rather long distances. They also quickly christened me "tom-tom" as I had to hold their sat nav in my hands in order to get directions.

Fortunately the owners of the B&B had no objections to them quickly using my room to get ready and in case anyone was getting too worried, I waited downstairs in the lounge.

By the time we got back to the chapel the bbq was in full swing, but of course being a church event there was more then enough left over and plenty still cooking on the bbq (where the elders were still firmly on duty). I was wondering outside to find a nice seat to eat my food when I noticed one of the girls who had come to use my shower, in the bishops office, sitting in the dark but she had plugged in her hair dryer so she could dry her hair. I'll just say that again, she was sitting in the bishops office in the dark, drying her hair. I couldn't help but ask why she was drying her hair in the dark. Her answer was short and straight to the point,  she was drying her hair in the dark as this was the only place she had found a free plug and she would feel guilty if she was doing in the light as she would be able to see the picture of President Monson clearly. I looked at the picture she was pointed at on the wall and decided not to mention that in the dark she had actually got it wrong. It wasn't President Monson in the picture frame. It was somebody above him, shall we say :-)

Over dinner there was a lot of general chit chat, and surprisingly enough some mention of Fifty shades of grey... but not in the way you were thinking mind you. Nope, it was more about how it was a sign of the times.  However there was a lot of talk about other things too and I was struck about how friendly everybody was in the poole area. Most church members are usually rather friendly but there was something about the guys and girls down there which seemed to be extra friendly. I wasn't hard to figure out that it was the leadership down there that was the cause of such a welcoming spirit.

However I did find out that our stake seems to be one of the only stakes that seem to consider that once you're 30 you're immediately out of YSA. Most other stakes seem to consider it's 31 and even then you would be "phased out". The abrupt "shown to the door" and no handover to the SA program that I had got was a cause of much surprise to many, which left me in two minds about what had happened, but I quickly shrugged and put it out of my mind. I was having too much fun

And besides it was time for the boat.