Jaqui's Daily Blog

Preparing For A Most Elegant Occasion

I am in all sorts of trouble.


Mr B, predictably, says it is All My Own Fault. A verdict on which I feel honour bound to concur. It happened like this. Myra, who is the Chairman of our local branch of the U3A (University of the Third Age) was intent on organising a Soirée. As I understand it, the definition of a Soirée is an evening gathering. To be more precise, according to one source I researched (never let it be said that I don't take my role as a daily blogger seriously, even if the content is mostly not, well, serious) it is "an elegant evening gathering" requiring fancier attire than usual. "Your usual jeans and tee-shirt just won't cut it," my source dictates. I will return to the question of attire a little later.


Anyway, Myra was planning a Soirée, elegant or not, but needed a number of performers to sign up to be part of the programme. In a moment of weakness, I offered to make a contribution. Which is why Mr B has absolutely no sympathy with my current predicament.


The fact is that, with only three days to go, I have only a skeleton of my possible performance sketched out. Moreover that skeleton is merely dancing about my brain ( a scary thought, that) rather than being committed to paper or its virtual equivalent. In short, I am Devoid of Ideas.


Mr B says it serves me right for (i) volunteering so rashly and (ii) being too busy. Guilty as charged, M'Lord. Which doesn't alter the fact that my name is already printed in the programme (albeit spelt incorrectly) so There Is No Getting Out Of This.


Moreover, Morag who plays the piano to accompany our Singing for Pleasure choir, has agreed to supply the piano accompaniment. I have arranged to visit her tomorrow afternoon, at her home, to practice. She is looking forward to having advance sight of the words of my contribution. So am I, but I can't tell her that. Somehow or othe, between now and tomorrow afternoon, I have to produce a comic, but meaningful version of that Sixties classic "Those Were The Days." Perceptive readers that you are, you will have picked up that my deadline has just shortened from three days to eighteen hours. I do also need to factor in a few hours' sleep, I suppose.


Forgetting for the moment that I am in deep doo-dah (well, you can forget, dear reader, even if I cannot) let us return to the question of attire. Elegant is the name of the game, as I read it. But, hey the choir is singing so we have to wear our black skirts or trousers and red shirts. Myra says so, therefore there is to be no argument. Not only will we not look particularly elegant but we choir members will all look the same. Which will be perfectly fine when we are on the stage, in choir formation, telling everybody to "Consider yourself - one of us!" and that "We'd Do Anything"- "As Long As He Needs Me." But when we all sit down again, in our separate chairs at our separate tables, we will just look as if we didn't have any notion of what constitutes Elegant Attire.


My friend Avril was not impressed to hear that the choir would be singing. A Soirée, she opined, should consist of solo performers only. I have checked back on my trusted sources (okay, goggle and Wikipedia) and I have not been able to corroborate this statement. vocabulary.com tells me that at a Soirée there may be classical music by a pianist or a jazz combo (whatever that might be) and "fancy food." I can't see any of these being ingredients of the Worthing U3A Soirée, to be honest. There may, if we are lucky, be a sausage roll apiece and a bowl of crisps per table. Who could want for more?

 

I am prevaricating, of course. I know that better than anybody. It's not about the clothes we will wear, or the food we will eat, or whether our newly formed U3A orchestra could be considered - in a dim light and muffled - a jazz combo. It's not about solo performers versus the Massed Choir. It's about being ready to perform which, at the time of writing, I most definitely am not.


So tonight, in my dreams, I will be drafting lines, none of which will make the least sense when I awake. Tomorrow morning I will be singing in the shower where all my best verses are composed. Tomorrow afternoon I will arrive at Morag's house and pretend I have it all sussed out. And on Friday evening, at the Most Elegant of Soirées?


I guess I shall just have to wing it.

 

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Latest comments

15.10 | 11:13

I don't remember seeing this first time round.... but thank you for sharing with me. You write beautifully, and brought a tear to my eyes. Lots of love xx

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10.10 | 21:37

Jaqui I think your grandchildren are very lucky. You have spurred me on to write a letter to Amelia who like Hazel is away from home for the first time. 💕

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03.07 | 22:43

Wouldn't have missed it for the world. xx

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12.06 | 02:31

I love that you talk to your plants ... I used to on my allotment ... seemed perfectly rational !

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