Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Meeting 8 April

A lovely early summer day for the meeting. The Easter holidays were very apparent by the number of pasty Brits clad in shorts heading for the pool clutching inflatable pool toys. Most of us who live here were still wearing fairly warm clothing and those who had cast their clout ( Jane for one) were regretting it somewhat and looking forward to hot coffee by half-time.

I forgot to make a note of how many we were but there was a fair number. Apologies from Ann Flynn, who will be away for a while becoming Bionic Woman ( Hip replacement). She would appreciate people keeping in touch.

Today´s subject was either a poem - Ghost, or The Waiting Room, which I suppose could be poem or prose. There weren´t so many contributors but it gave a bit more time for discussion, which was great.

We had three poems:

Mary K´s gave some keen observations of people in a doctor´s waiting room. One man constantly going to the toilet, another with a sore toe and wearing odd shoes and a woman
"Far too overweight
Headed for the Pearly Gate."
She´d tried out a new form of eight 4-line verses and four couplets to see how it would work. Very well, was the consensus. It was an amusing poem and raised chuckles round the table.

Ian´s poem was about Life´s waiting room, where all were anxious to hear whether their lot was "Heaven or the Pearly Gate". A good poem but rather more gloomy than Mary´s.

Chris combined the topics of Ghost and Waiting Room to describe an unsuspecting traveller who, having missed her train, was rounded up by Death to go on her final journey. This was really

The prose pieces were as follows:

Jane´s was in her usual inimitable style.
She described how she and her sister, as young children, entertained her doctor stepmother´s patients while they were sitting in the waiting room. It was really funny when she came to the bit about extracting a penny per patient for her and her sister´s spending money, until caught red-handed by a furious Doctor Mary. Jenny suggested it could do very well in a competition advertised about what you were doing fifty years ago.

Brenda´s turn came and I think those of us who knew she´d been on a trip to Norway to stay in the Ice Hotel and see the Northern Lights, expected a Scandinavian eulogy.
What a surprise we got! Just before leaving on her holiday, Brenda´s house was broken into for the third time in short order! Not surprisingly, hers was an angry, bitter rail against the burglar and also the police, who showed no interest in investigating the crime. The piece was well-expressed and really conveyed the helpless rage of those whose privacy has been invaded time and again. We all felt for her and her partner and we really hope that writing about the experience has helped towards getting over it.

Glyn continued reading his novel about life in the army.
This week´s extract was a description of a football match between two rival platoons. Ned won the day by dropping his shorts and taking advantage of the stunned reaction his physical endowments caused to score a goal when his team was losing. Very funny and well-written.

Heinke´s piece was based on an experience she had had some years ago when accompanying someone to a Masterclass in how to cope with HIV. It was very interesting, at times funny and certainly made you think. She´s considering entering it in a competition.

Alan was the last reader. He gave us another exerpt from his novel "The Inheritance". This week the setting was Hong Kong, where he has worked. It was very colourful and when he stopped there were disappointed cries for more.

All in all, a good meeting.

Chris J


  1. Well written Chris! (loved the humour and hint of exaggeration!)


  2. Yet another enjoyable, interesting and thought provoking meeting. Well reported, too; thanks, Chris!

  3. Good meeting. Perhaps one topic for next list of topics could be "Doom and Gloom".

    Ian C