Friday morning, 9am. A group of guys arrives at the sparse Community Centre in Arbroath and gets ready for three days of solid work all to raise money for local good causes. Fuelled by a selection of lorne, egg, bacon and black pudding from and van behind the centre, the work starts with one team heading into Dundee to collect pallets and other heading around Arbroath to collect fridges, chillers and other essentials.
5km of ribbon are pulled out of the back of a car and a lightbulb moment turns the decoration schedule upside down – for the better. The pallets arrive and the bar gets its foundation. Later on the fridges arrive, the alcohol is chilled and the tables and chairs are ready. Most leave around 10pm after a long, hard day.
Saturday arrives and another few hours during the day are used to finalise everything. The Saturday night arrives. It is the Blues Festival in town but the guys hear rumours that Wetherspoons has 150 Pink Ladies getting lubricated in preparation for Arbroath Round Tables annual Ladies Night – this year with a Grease theme.
9pm Saturday. The WooWoo’s are flowing, the Grease Tribute act has the dance floor filled and the guys are nervously awaiting their dance. Frustratingly after 6 weeks of rehearsals and getting it 100% right the previous few weeks, the dance goes a little awry with one dancer flying over the dodgem and the Grease Lightning moves being about as co-ordinated as Bambi on ice – the screams from the ladies at the conclusion were amazing though. The benefit of doing the dance when the audience are well oiled is that they either don’t notice the mistakes, or couldn’t care less about them.
1pm. Home. Knackered.
11am Sunday. Tired limbs and weary minds appear to take everything down. The floor is extremely sticky, the paper tablecloths are covered with drawings of willies and the slops bucket makes everyone wretch.
2pm. Done. Everything is clean, everything is away. All is sorted.
The final figure comes to £4,396. The stress of organisation, the long hours, the numerous meetings – all worth it when it enables us to help even more local good causes.
Until next year!