Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


Yipee for vacations... though I can't see you with purple hair. If you do, you must post a picture - LOL!

By Blogger Carolyn, at 6:45 PM  

Sounds great - glad it was so successful! But you're right about the early birds. My dad used to be a manufacturers' representative and at least once or twice a year he'd have a salesman's sample yard sale at our house. People would show up three hours early and start to haggle with him over prices, before the thing had even started! He didn't put up with that, I'll tell ya!

By Blogger Mary, at 8:45 PM  

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Monday, September 25, 2006  

Oh rats rats rats. I just clicked the wrong bleepin’ x on the computer screen and dumped my whole post. Rats rats rats.

It’s not that I can’t rewrite the thing. Not even that I don’t have the time to do it. It’s just that ... the feel of it, the tenor, can’t be recaptured when you’re ticked off about the blanketyblank way computers let you down.


Because this was the elegiac post about being on vacation after you’ve successfully completed a big project in which you’d invested a lot more than time.

And now it’s a rewrite put together by a grouchy typist who would really rather kick her stupid computer than try to recapture any literary bliss.

But the report from TheAuction is really all good. We grossed just a tad under $4,000. Not bad for a first passage through uncharted waters. I won’t know what the net profit was till I get the invoice from my caterer and the school, but it will be close to $3K. I’m pleased, the Friends of the Library is pleased and the auction committee is already thinking of things they want to do next time to make it even better. You know you’ve been successful when the worker bees are ready to do it again!

I’ve written up a big list of ThingsI’dDoDifferently, plus another of ThingsWeDidRight. Among the TWDR was enlisting 4HYMwT (4 Husky Young Men with Trucks) to move everything from the storage unit to the auction site. 130+ things in one hour - and none of them had to move more than one truck load. Sweet. What we could have used was an extra hour for setting up - because who would have thought that folk would show up at 5:15 for an auction that wasn’t going to start till 7 o’clock? We’ll know better next time.

Another thing we did right was to get two young girls from the local private school to act as Vana Whites. Dressed in their pleated skirt/knee socks school uniform, they charmed everyone. They were both from Korea and this was a real eye-opener for them - an opportunity to get up close to the natives. These girls are always present and very visible, but they seldom get to know people in the community. Mostly they remain in their virginal enclave along the river and go back to their own countries thinking everyone in America is an Episcopalian and owns a Volvo.

There was a divine hand guiding us to choose the caterer - or else sheer dumb luck. I had no idea how many caterers would be booked up in September. Turns out, that’s a big wedding month, though once it was pointed out to me I realize that, here in hot’n’humid Upper Tidewater Virginia, if you want an outdoor wedding and you couldn’t get it together by June, you’re going to have to put it off till September. And if you want a big party and don’t want to rent a big hall, outdoors is the only way to go. So. Another reason to skip September when we choose a date for our next auction.

But that caterer. Oh My. Not only is he a great cook, he’s a big hearted man with a booming voice and a twinkle in his eye. Best of all, he’s a shopper and joined the bidders, teasing with the auctioneer and pushing up the price on some of the nicer items. We’ll have him again next time. We were all pleased when the vintage photo of the 1903-04 Tappahannock Baseball Team went to his son for a low price. As soon as people realized what was happening, the bidding stopped and the boy was triumphant.

There are lots of things I’ll do differently next time, not the least of which will be to have a committee chairman with some knowledge of antiques and collectibles, who is responsible for ordering and numbering each item and who will feed them to the Vana White girls in their proper order. That person will definitely not be me because I can’t read when I get excited - my dyslexia kicks in so hard and fast I can’t follow the program. Everything becomes a mishmash blur. Who’da thought?

The TIDD list covers 3 pages. All of them will make the auction run more smoothly for those of us responsible. But none of the things I did this time, but will do differently, were so glaring they hurt our First Ever Auction. Heck. Nobody even realized how many times we’d screwed up. Mostly people just laughed off our mistakes and asked us when we were going to do it again.

So. A happy success. Even having to rewrite this report has reminded me of all the fun it was and how glad I am we did this. My friends group is so proud of themselves. They’re so energized. They’re thinking ahead again, with purpose and energy. New members joined The Friends. It was a 100% plus perfect winner of an evening.

And best of all? I am now on VaCAYtion! Yippee for me. I can do what I wish all day long. I can sleep in the afternoon or watch Elizabeth Zimmermann on video or dye my hair purple if I want. There’ll be a whole week to dye it back! But first I will clean my house. I want it to sparkle the whole week long and I want to be in that sparklyness every day. I am going to savor every sweet moment. And I’m going to knit.

Yes. Sweet reward after hard work. Sounds like a morality tale. Sounds just right.

posted by Bess | 8:20 AM