Drunk with power

Japanese Windflower

Japanese Windflower

Thomas Grey once wrote,

“The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e’er gave,
Awaits alike th’ inevitable hour:-
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.”

It was always going to be an AGM that would be less boring than any of the previous ones. The furore about the public posters about the stolen cyclamen guaranteed a meeting whereby moving motions would thankfully be kept to a minimum. After arriving at 5.30 pm, Helvi and I took our seats around a large table. I immediately went for the head of the table. This would ensure that both my impaired ears were in line with whoever spoke from either side. I immediately noticed the carafes and glasses on their coasters in the middle of the conference table. The place was also heated. A sure sign that this Strata Body’s AGM was going to be a real bottler.

Five of the eight possible town-house owners, capable of voting were present and somewhat gingerly took their seats. We had anticipated that the issue of the posters was going to be kept last. There were still some issues to be dealt with, not least of all, the inevitable accepting of previous minutes of the last AGM and financial statements. I noticed that the Extraordinary GM whereby the dodgy quote for painting was dealt with together with the threat of the Strata Body Corporate losing their license, because of the irregularities of funding were exposed (by this writer) were conveniently not mentioned. The atmosphere was tense if not electrifying. AGM’s can never reach that sort of level. It’s not like a rugby game in Wales, nor like the procedure of politicians leaving the House pre-maturely and a Government losing a vote for the first time in over fifty years.


At last after much wrangling the Poster issue was raised. It wasn’t a motion nor foreshadowed and I resisted the temptation to raise an objection. We were getting very hungry, and even though I drank some water, I don’t like gnawing hunger. But, and here comes the punchline. I was nominated ‘secretary’! After all that. The Poster complaint was wiped away when I mentioned we followed the police’s advice in notifying the neighbours by stapling up ‘Thief Alert’ posters. One lady had taken a large rock to the meeting, claiming it was hurled at her door as a result of my posters. She blatantly lied. I pointed out that putting up a poster doesn’t mean rocks would be hurled around.

It never stops. I am now a secretary. Unbelievable.

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16 Responses to “Drunk with power”

  1. Dorothy brett Says:

    Still cant imagine “would be “Cyclamen Thieves” would go down the lane along your properties to the other entrance looking for potential items to steal.
    But who knows really except the culprit.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Neither can I, Dorothy. It will forever be a conundrum. We replaced the cyclamen and more.

      Stealing is becoming increasingly an accepted form of amusement. Just shrug it off, seems to be the response of some.

      Anyway, I am secretary now and will rule this compound with a Rumanian’s dictator’s dedication. 😉

      Liked by 2 people

  2. roughseasinthemed Says:

    Don’t you have an agenda and formal papers distributed in advance? I also ban a y other business, can’t abide it. I am chair, secretary and treasurer. True dictatorship.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Oh, it’s a bit of a chaos. Undisciplined and I was the only boy in the village! I only got nominated because I can handle internet. The chairperson doesn’t have a cell phone and is not on the internet. I think I will perform all three functions now.
      I am taking early strolls through the compound coughing loudly and with significance.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Yvonne Says:

    That’ll keep you with your nose to the grindstone, being Secretary. I reckon it’s the hardest job on a committee! Go, benevolent despot ….

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      I get up early now and get behind my desk. We came home late last night after a stint in Sydney looking after the grand-kids. I am dreamily thinking up letters to the owners whereby I will stamp authority and discipline on this compound.
      For a start, out with the rotting Camellia flowering bushes and all leaves to be left in situ. Nature will be encouraged to grow just on its own accord.
      Cameras will be set up to record any vandalism practiced by recalcitrant owners and publicly shamed on a special pole yet to be erected…
      And, that’s just for starters.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. lifecameos Says:

    How come your objectors allowed this ? You should be able to keep them in order now. You are the communicator.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Andrew Says:

    Seize control Gerard. You hold the pen. You can steer the ship. Be ruthless.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, Andrew.
      They will know what it feels like to have discipline and order.
      I was up at 6am, planning my first public announcement on the communal garden. All gaps in hedges and previously slashed areas to be rejuvenated. No more residential hatreds to be vented on Hebes or May-flower bushes. I will insist on residents to learn stroking plants and bend over to hug the Manchurian Pear tree, now in full blossom.
      Compulsory breathing exercises inhaling fragrant Jonquils and Daphne.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. Curt Mekemson Says:

    That will teach you, Gerard. Back when I was living in Sacramento, I went to a meeting of our condo board to complain and ended up as VP and then President. Those meetings are to be avoided at all costs. 🙂 –Curt

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, it was funny how it all went. I half expected to be thrown out. We shall see how it goes. It keeps me off the street, Curt. 😉
      As we came home late last night we were pleased to see that the sensor light went on as we approached the front door.
      I had to fiddle with it and almost took it back when I noticed there was a hidden little toggle that one had to switch on on.


  7. shoreacres Says:

    I’m sure you’ve said and I’ve missed it, but — what is an AGM. Those of us over here aren’t so familiar with your acronyms. But I get the sense, believe me.

    Are you sure the move to make you Secretary wasn’t a subtle form of punishment? If I were you, I’d put up another poster by my door that says, “Complaints cheerfully received between the hours of 4:00 p.m. and 4:05 p.m. Best defense a good offense, and all that.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. gerard oosterman Says:

    AGM-Annual General Meeting. I did staple up another poster. A kind of community notice board. People now stand around and talk in hushed tones.


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