Saturday, 5 September 2009

A Gala Occasion

I spent almost all today at a local Gala, with some craft stuff and my embroidery machine. I'd actually been invited to take a table, and was told that between 3000 and 3500 people usually attend.


I arrived at 10.30am and set up my table. [it was 'take a table' in every sense - I had to bring one with me!] Here is my stall, halfway through the setting up process. I'd stopped for a cup of tea at this point! Carrying a 6-foot GoPak table up from the Car Park then all the other stuff as well was a bit exhausting.

Along with my Craft stuff, I'd also got some publicity about upcoming Church Events. As I needed an electric socket, I was located in the Village Hall by the Tea Bar [I believe there were other craft stalls outside in a marquee, but I never got outside to see them]

Two ladies from the kitchen were very interested in the sewing machine and ordered shoe bags for their grandchildren, before the Gala officially opened.

Occasionally people drifted in and looked at the stall.

At 2.30pm, some members of "Synergy", our local community choir came into the Hall and sang. For the first couple of pieces, many of the people sitting drinking tea just continued their conversations.

Then Janet began "Amazing Grace" as a solo.


An incredible hush fell on the room, and it was great to realise people were actually listening to her! She has a tremendous voice, and I know she believes every word of the hymn and was singing from her heart. It was powerful stuff!

After they'd sung, people drifted back to their refreshments... and my friend Carole brought me a cuppa and a lovely slice of lemon cakes [thanks C!]

Then there was a rush of customers [well, three anyway, wanting me to embroider baby stuff for grandchildren]

Quite a few children from the school where I do some supply came and spoke - most of them seem to have purchased various items of weaponry from one of the stalls outside. WHY do they persist in allowing people to sell toy guns at 'community' events? There was a march against gun crime in Derby today, and it seems to me that selling kids machine guns is not a positive action.

At 4pm, a Jazz Band outside the Hall started playing - they were very good too


At 5pm, Bob came to help me load the stuff back into the car. I was utterly exhausted by then.

Did I have an enjoyable day? Yes

Did I enjoy the Synergy performance? Oh yes!

Did I have conversations with lots of interesting people? Yes

Was I able to distribute lots of my church info stuff? Yes

Were there 3500 people there? I don't think so

Did I have many customers? Just fifteen!

...and only one lady bought any bunting - but loads of people said what fun it was. At £3 for 10 feet, you could hardly call it expensive, but the punters weren't parting with their money today. I suppose a plastic machine gun is probably more exciting than a roll of brightly coloured pencils.

Maybe I should have stayed at home and done the ironing instead!

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind, but now I see.

T'was Grace that taught my heart to fear.
And Grace, my fears relieved.
How precious did that Grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
'Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
and Grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me.
His word my hope secures.
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

When we've been there ten thousand years
Bright shining as the sun.
We've no less days to sing God's praise
Than when we've first begun.

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