Two strikes

It’s rare for us to have rain during the months of July and August. If we do have any, it’s generally overnight, electric storms which dry up before we’re out and about the next day. Unusually, we had to postpone this year’s La Ronde, and accompanying pointage, scheduled for early August, because it rained heavily, early in the morning, rendering the proposed race circuit dangerous.

An alternative date was found. It was to be this Sunday. All the necessary permissions were sought and granted and we had sufficient volunteers. It wasn’t the most convenient date, I’m leaving for Italy early Sunday morning and M le President has to dash off as soon as the event finishes, but we were working with it. In addition, I’d been keeping a watchful eye on the long range weather forecast. Sure enough, as we’ve crept closer to the rearranged date, the forecast has remained inexorably unchanged: storms, storms and more storms. M le President and I took an executive decision which has led to a pre-emptive strike. Yes, three days before the due date, and before we incur any costs or undertake any work, we’ve cancelled.

We’ll try for another date for the pointage, but the race is cancelled. This means I won’t get to reprise one of my favourite roles, the world’s oldest podium girl, and I won’t have a valid excuse to kiss a bunch of fit, young men. It also means I won’t, for the time being, get to empty my freezer of cake. I froze all the cakes I had freshly made for the earlier date. The ones which I’d made, frozen and subsequently defrosted were eaten by the volunteers and those that turned up in vain who were quite happy to wait and eat cake. Please give us another date soon, I can’t get so much as a bag of breadcrumbs in my freezer. I will, of course, start to use them for my forthcoming English classes but my students will tire of that much pain d’epice, however delicious it might be. Plus they prefer cookies and brownies, rather than fare suitable for post-cycling.

One of the members has offered us his old, still functioning, freezer which we’re going to install in the storage area. This will enable us to save for later use anything which doesn’t get used up at our various get-togethers and events. We must have had about 10kg of ham left-over from the Kivilev which we distributed among the faithful. I froze mine to use at August’s, subsequently cancelled, La Ronde and we did use a fair bit in sandwiches before again, redistributing the left overs. I still have some in the freezer which I was going to use this time around for some savoury ham, cheese and chive cakes. Once the freezer has been installed at the club, I’ll be able to transfer the ample contents of my freezer. I will, however, have to institute regular stock checks to ensure none of my delicious edibles go walk about.

A more pressing problem is M le President’s morale. Ever since he realised we weren’t going to get the funding to continue our team of young racers, a project close to his heart, he’s been really down in the dumps and totalling lacking in motivation. A state that’s not gone unnoticed by the anxious membership. However, I saw a spark of life this week when we started discussing next year’s Kivilev. He’s keen to persist with its retention as a sportif and, in truth, if we can find someone to sponsor the participant goodie bags, we’ll easily make a profit. This is excellent news and as the former president has now stepped down as course director, matters will be made far easier. Frankly, club politics are worse than office politics and there’s just no getting away from it.

Meanwhile, I’ve been working on various analyses to ensure an accurate presentation of the club’s results and it’s various activities. This should enable more informed decision making and give M le President a better handle on the club’s finances. However, I’m still confiscating his cheque  book and credit card. I’m only prepared to give him so much rope.

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