Jaqui's Daily Blog

A School Hall, a Bowls Tournament and a Skewiff Badge

The signs on the wall spell it out loud and clear. “Be Kind and Considerate” reads one. Underneath is another notice, this time invoking us to “Be Safe and Sensible.”


Any guesses where we might be? Take a Brownie point if you guessed that we are in a primary school hall.  There’s nothing so inspirational as the notices on the walls of a primary school hall. However today the school hall has been taken over by the Champion of Champions Short Mat Bowls Tournament.  Mr B and I are there to watch, being careful to be kind, considerate, safe and sensible while we are about it.


This morning it was the Singles, this afternoon it is the Pairs. Tomorrow they will play the Triples in the morning while the afternoon will be given over to the Finals.  Together with the Drawing of the Raffle which is possibly our club’s best chance of winning anything this weekend.


Yesterday I had carefully sewn a club badge onto Mr B’s white sleeveless jumper so that everyone would know which club he belonged to.  At my first attempt the badge was completely skewiff (one of my Mum’s favourite words, by the way) so I had to unpick it and sew it on all over again. I expected a few appreciative words of thanks but, oh no, according to Mr B the badge was still not correctly aligned. This is the trouble with having a printer for a husband, even a micro-millimetre out (no, I’m not sure if there is any such measurement either but I thought I would use it for effect) and he is not happy.  I stuck to my guns and said there was no way I was unpicking it and sewing it on again. He complained that this would mean he would have to walk lop-sided so that nobody would see his badge wasn’t on straight. I couldn’t resist asking whether anyone would notice the difference. Which was neither kind nor considerate of me.


I bought him a packet of Werthers Originals as a peace offering. Yes, they are my favourite sweet, my Confectionery of Choice, but he likes them too, you know.  That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.


Back to the school hall – or, more accurately, the corridors. I love wandering about school corridors looking at all the children’s art work on the walls. It was always what I enjoyed most about going to vote when the primary school around the corner was used as a polling station. I learnt such a lot on every visit. Sadly the Council has now opted to use the new football pavilion at the end of our road for its polling station. The posters on the walls are nowhere near as educational.


Here’s a display of miniature desert islands.  I am assuming that this is what they are as each island has what looks like a badly stunted cardboard palm tree growing on it. On the wall there is an Attendance Chart made up of multi-coloured leaves, next to a wall-hanging entitled “Ridiculous Riddles.” I would like to have studied both of these in more detail, especially the Ridiculous Riddles which would doubtless have made excellent copy for future daily blogs, but in order to read it I would have had to interrupt play on the two nearest rinks. This would have been neither safe nor sensible.


We have to keep moving around from one hall to the next in order to follow our Pairs team.  I notice that some of the players are super smart, with dazzling white shirts, well-creased trousers and perky ties. Others are just a little less so. I try to check out which of them have their badges sewn on skewiff but it’s hard to tell from the sidelines where I am perched.


On our Pairs team we have one Super Optimist and one Dire Pessimist. “Four down!” calls the Pessimist, dourly. “Soon change all that!” carols the Optimist in a loud voice which carries the length of the hall. Nothing changes. “May as well go home now,” mutters the Pessimist. “Next end we’ll do better!” responds the Optimist. Bless him, he deserves full marks for trying. I am sure he is taking strength from another inscription I have just noticed on the wall which reads: “Work. Play. Succeed.” He works hard. He plays the game. Success, alas, evades him and his partner.


Some clubs appear to have brought the equivalent of a coach outing of supporters with them.  We are few and far between because some of our members are clearing out the clubhouse in preparation for the Outdoor Season.


Ah, the Outdoor Season. Mr B can’t wait to get out there on the beautiful greens of Marine Gardens. Bowling indoors is OK for the winter, he says, but once Summer beckons, so does the Great Outdoors.  Which is sad for me because our Short Mat Bowls Club is packing up for the summer – it’s our last meeting on Monday. I will miss it more than I thought I would when I took up the sport back in the Autumn.


Maybe one year I will represent our club at the Champion of Champions Tournament. I will play it safe and sensible, ever kind and considerate to my opponents. I will wear perfectly-creased trousers and a dazzling white shirt. Adorned with an (ever so slightly) skewiff club badge...

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Latest comments

23.04 | 20:15

lovely and heartwarming - an inspiration to us all x

09.03 | 12:07

Love this story told as ever beautifully.x

10.11 | 21:31

What a super account of a special event. I loved meeting you last night and seeing your creation come together. I’m so pleased you got so much from the activity

07.09 | 13:17

I have broad shoulders x

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