During the summer I was approached, oh so casually, by the tennis club secretary and asked rather obliquely if I would consider joining the club committee. When I didn't say no the information was sent back along the line to the club president who then also approached me, slightly less casually, to double check that I had said yes. A little later during a team match our captain said that she thought it was very good that I was getting involved with the club and joining the committee. I bowed to the inevitable and my name was put forward. I was duly elected to the committee two weeks ago and immediately informed that the first meeting would be a week later - last Friday in fact.
Along I went, curious more than anything else about what we might talk about and discuss. I did expect some discussion. First up was welcoming the new members - me and two others. All the right things were said and we each introduced ourselves. Then item number two: the vice-president was leaving after 21 years and we needed to elect a new one. Immediately. Anyone want to put themselves forward? No reply.
At this point Madame President gave a short talk on how the VP did not have a heavy workload during the first year and that the main thing was to be an active part of the club and help promote it, finding new members and helping during the two tournaments and other great annual events. We all nodded in agreement. And then the stunner: "So, Jean, I think you would be perfect for the job of VP and if you agree I put you forward...and now we can vote."
My stunned silence was taken as approval. We were each given a piece of paper and they all asked me how to spell my name - so much for the secret ballot! - and that was that. I still hadn't spoken but I had learnt very quickly that when the President speaks she does not expect dissenters. (She'll learn!) I was, of course, flattered; I'm not sure how I can fulfill my role but I have a feeling I will be guided pulled along by Madame President herself so I'm not overly concerned.
I'm also pleased - I have made suggestions in the past which seem to have vanished into thin air. Now I will be able to at least watch them while they vanish or perhaps even put them into practice. This year, with only reluctant agreement from the President, we started Club Night - turn up and play on Monday evenings from 6pm onwards. Basically, however many people turn up we make sure everyone plays, standing out every three games. It's been great fun and the players who came along have enjoyed it. Next year we hope the word will spread further and more players will come along.
Next year, too, another committee member wants to run an informal ladder tournament. The two tournaments the club holds at the moment are great fun but only attract players who want to take part in competitions. We are hoping that a ladder will involve just about everyone as it's informal and each player can try to move up the ladder. Competitive yes but without the pressure!
If anyone has any other ideas - perhaps things you've done at your club - don't hesitate to let me know. In the meantime I am avoiding our son's school as they are currently out scouting for new members to join the Parent/Teachers group...