Saturday, May 11, 2013
I Am Certifiable But I Have Fun!
It's spring clean-up and maintenance time for the condo building, which means sweeping the gravel from the parking lots and parkade, cleaning the carpets in all the common areas, having the outside of the building pressure washed and the windows cleaned, cleaning the dryer vents, having the sewer drains cleaned, repairing concrete and asphalt weathering, on and on and on.
This all involves a lot of inconvenience for residents, who must find alternate parking for several days, haul all their patio and/or balcony furniture and flower pots inside and back out again, and put up with no water, and not being able to even pour water down a sink or flush a toilet on the day the drains are cleaned.
So yours truly, (aka "She who will never learn") proposed at the last meeting of the condo board that we throw a BBQ for the residents mid-May, as all this cleaning got underway, to ease the inevitable grumbling. Everyone was enthusiastic. What I did not realize is that when I said, "The Condo Board…." the rest of the board heard… "*I* (meaning me individually, alone) will throw a BBQ for…."
Now this is not exactly true. I had plenty of help. Two other board members bought the food. One brought the big table with folding legs from his work. He also bought and brought the propane tank. Another brought the BBQ grill from her patio across the parking lot to the lawn where we were encamping before she took off for the weekend.
In the end only one other board member was here (of seven) to help me haul the food, the table, the cooler, and all the necessary tools out to the front lawn, where we set up in the shade and cooked the food. Even so it went just fine. We had burgers, hot dogs, both white and whole wheat wheat buns, three flavours of chips, condiments, cold drinks and popsicles, which is a pretty reasonable menu for a Saturday afternoon BBQ.
The weather couldn't have been better. It was 27 C (80.6 F) with a light breeze. Perfect!
When we sent out invitations we asked our residents to drop a note in the suggestion box to let if they were attending, and some did, but as expected, half the ones who said they were coming didn't, and many who didn't say they were did! In the end we had 48 attending, which was a great turnout! And even better, about 3/4ths of them came early, and sat to visit with their neighbours until the very end. People who had passed each other in the hall for ages finally learned each others' names and had pleasant conversations. I was especially thrilled that several of our residents who rarely interact with anyone came out and not only had lunch but talked with some other residents.
At the same time we had a "Swap Meet", where we said, "Bring anything that's still useful, good, clean that you want to move along to a new home and we'll play swap. If you see something you like, you may take it for free!"
So, most residents arrived with a box, bag or bin full of items to pass along. This was as much fun as a visit from Santa Claus, especially as one of our ladies draped the clothing over the limbs of the pine trees and gave fancy sales pitches for each one, resulting in a bit of an impromptu fashion show with some models not usually seen on Parisian catwalks.
I moved along a number of items (as described in a previous post) and came home with a couple of beautiful picture frames and a great storage piece for the bathroom. The items which were left at the end were boxed up to be delivered to the Sally Ann.
So, dear Interweb friends, I had a bang-up afternoon and am completely knackered but am totally happy.