Sunday, 24 March 2013

Welfare


One Heath-Robinson inspired burglar alarm

Yesterday was unusual in that it was the first day this year I didn't post a blog entry, plus a few other things. Today I was very tired, and as I recount backwards, it will be shown to be unsurprising. Today I wore a yellow shirt, signifying the role of Welfare Officer at a TAGB tournament. Should a child or vulnerable adult be in need of assistance, for reasons of paperwork errors or emotional meltdowns or the physical shock of being hit by a determined opponent or a mysterious case of lost sparring equipment, then the Welfare Officer steps in. The resilience of the children was impressive. It speaks well of the standard of training. Most of my conversations went like this:
'Did you get hit?'
'Yes.' (Wipes tears from cheek.) 'I'm okay though.'
Outside it is snowing.
The car park was slithering with eager competitors as we arrived. The breakfast; digesting noisily in my stomach; was free, and the cost of my hotel room had been refunded. I had to untie my door before getting to breakfast. I had hardly slept. Too many passers by…
Next to my bed, in which I lay fully clothed, which now seems hilarious, was a sharp pencil, a hard plastic comb and a china mug. My phone was poised to dial an emergency (police for me, ambulance for intruders) and that's why the battery ran flat. Before bed, I had rigged the door with a scarf, a chair, a metal waste bin and the other coffee cup. I didn't want to stay there but home was too far away for a return that evening.
The policeman was so nice, and I hadn't expected so much support. I watched his flashlight scour the hedges from the warmth of the reception building.
The trainee receptionist had called the police: the fully trained receptionist scoured the car park and returned to me my pencil case, found ditched on the path.
Shame the newly offered room was next door but one to where the door had been kicked in and my bag stolen. I thought it was odd that the light was left on, since I rarely leave a light lit without cause. Odder that the door seemed unlocked: and I had definitely not left bits of doorframe and lock on the floor, nor had I chucked my clothes around and there was decided one bag less on the bed than when I left for a perfectly lovely inexpensive steak at the pub over the road.
Before leaving for the celebratory meal, I had put into my pocket my new phone and my wallet. I didn't think I would need my diary, my notebook, my house key or the beautifully sentimental key ring that my son made for me. I left them in my handbag, the leather and goatskin extravagance I have been inseparable from recently.
On arrival at the hotel, it was more of a motel, each room so independent, and I liked this.
It was snowing. Vanessa drove, Gerry navigated. We talked of many things, and most of all I was mediating between YES and I Could Have Done Better If Nerves Had Not Undermined.
I passed! I passed my Second Dan pre-grading.
In Bristol, Saturday afternoon, feeling very very sick. But thinking to self: 'Did I get hit? Yes, but I'm okay.'

One Coventry souvenir


10 comments:

  1. You had me racing through this, heart thumping to make sure that you were indeed ok. Such attacks are frightening, even if we aren't directly involved. I hope you rest up well. And I am sorry for the loss of your keychain.
    -Heather

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  2. What a strange day you had, the good feelings from volunteering and the angst from being robbed. It's good you had your wallet with you. I haven't been to Coventry in years. It seemed such a peaceful, quiet place. But *sighs* I guess thieves are everywhere now. Anyway, I hope you get your purse back. It could've been tossed somewhere.

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  3. Thank you ladies- it was all a bit overwhelming. But quite survivable!

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  4. What a horrible experience. That you had any presence of mind left was a miracle. And making a burglar alarm with found objects. nothing short of amazing. I cracked up at the 'Heath-Robinson': my partner's Dad always used to say that when she went at something in a less than deft way.
    Congratulations on the pass.

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  5. Thank you Stephanie! No point being a Black Belt if you can't find a bit of grace under pressure :-)

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  6. Uhm, maybe you can lie a bit low for a while? You sure do well with calamitous events. ~Mary

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  7. You certainly exemplify grace under pressure; I'm so glad you're okay despite the hit you took.

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  8. I had to Google TAGB. Now I understand.

    Congrats on passing your pre-grading.

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  9. Well, that just stinks! What a way to ruin what should have been a good experience. I hope you're still doing okay. Sometimes, the sense of being violated doesn't kick in right away. Too bad you didn't see the thief yourself... you woulda kicked his arse.

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  10. Mary: yes, enough calamity! Much prefer calm!
    Jacqueline: the further away the event gets, the funnier it becomes. At this rate, could well become a happy memory!
    Mr Squid: Thank you Sir :-) Only one small bruise to show for that too! Rather proud of passing but training lots- can't afford to rest on any laurels!!
    Susan- Lol, I don't mind a fight now and then- but peace and quiet is always best!

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