Unit Leader took them home and baked them in marathon sessions, cling-filmed and labelled them, and brought them along to the health centre the following Saturday mornings, along with all the other things necessary for a cake and book stall and a tombola. Lucky she has a transit van, really.
She and several other volunteers in the district work at the health centre, and they kindly let us have a stall outside when they hold clinics for flu vaccinations every autumn. We get lots of passing trade, the staff get tasty treats for elevenses, and the patients have a gamble or buy a cake or book to make them feel better after their jabs: win win.
On the day of the first stall, it just rained and rained. We still had plenty of people buying cakes and our other wares, but not many wanted to stop and chat or browse, and all the helpers were cold and damp before the end of the morning. And our gazebo overturned into a tree, which was quite funny. Lesson learned: always peg out the guy ropes, even if it doesn’t seem windy! At the second stall, the weather was warmer and drier, so it was much more pleasant standing outside and encouraging people over.
Both times we had a good number of helpers from the district: leaders, Senior Section, Guides, Trefoil Guilders, assorted family members, and even the children of one of the health centre staff. Quite a few also dropped off cakes or popped in to say hello on their way to get jabbed. Some I hadn’t seen for a while, so it was a good chance to catch up and talk about events coming up in the future.
It was good, too, for that warm fuzzy sense of community. Some of the helpers seemed to know everyone who went past, which was useful for drawing them in and getting them to buy something out of
guilt friendship. Even I, who haven’t lived in the town for 7 years, recognised quite a lot of people. I also had some nice chats with strangers, particularly an 80-year-old woman (she told me so) who told me she went to Brownies in the hall where we still meet, and about how she especially remembers doing her Telephone badge and having to walk in a group to the phone box in the market place with a penny and ask the operator to be put through to a certain number. Yet more evidence that Brownie memories can stick with you for life. I know some of our current Brownies have just done their Communicator badge, in the same hall where this lady was a Brownie, which included sending a text – I love how that’s pretty much the same thing, over 70 years later.
Altogether, both stalls raised over £900 for the district – everyone involved (especially Unit Leader, the driving force) can be very proud.