*****Spanish meetings.

From: Kichiji
Sent on: Tuesday, January 3, 2012 4:38 PM

Hello, everyone,

Please read at least as far as the third line.

In this message:
-Meeting dates and venues.
-Please greet newcomers.

There are six meetings in the near future.  The first will take place on
Thursday, January 5th, at 7:00pm, at Second Cup,[masked]rd Ave SW (Marda Loop).  The second will take place on
Saturday, January 7th, at 6:30pm, at Higher Ground Cafe, 1126 Kensington Rd NW.  The third will take place on
Thursday, January 12th, at 7:30pm, also at Higher Ground Cafe, 1126 Kensington Rd NW.  The fourth will take place on
Sunday, January 22nd, at 1:00pm, at Yamato Dessert Cafe, 1322 Centre St NE.  The fifth will take place on
Thursday, January 26th, at 8:30pm, at Beat Niq Jazz Bar, 811 1st St SW.  The sixth will take place on
Thursday, February 9, at 7:00pm, at Second Cup,[masked]rd Ave SW (Marda Loop).

Please pay special attention to the event on Thursday, January 26th.  This is a performance by the Salero Calo Flamenco Group.

Note also that some of us replied to this event before the date was set, so please go back to the event page and make sure your reply is still valid.

Tickets are $17.00 and can be purchased online at...

http://www.flamencocalgary.com/

These are 2, 4, 9, 19, 23 and 37 days from now.

Please go now, and RSVP for these.

A couple of months ago, a couple of things happened that disturbed me.

It was at Higher Ground, and the Spanish meeting was scheduled to start at 7:30pm, but some of us had arrived early.

We had our usual string of tables that I collected based on the number of people that had replied "Yes".

Then three things happened.

Firstly, at 7:20pm, a couple sat down at the last table in our row of tables.  Someone should have gone over to them and said, "Welcome to the
Spanish group.  Is this your first time at one
our meetings?"

In fact, they were obviously not members of the Spanish group, but I find greeting people as if they are members of the group gentler than saying "go away!"

I was with the French group at the time, but when I saw that no one else did so, I went over and greeted them as above, in Spanish.  When they didn't understand me, I asked them if
they were members of the Spanish group, and told them that we were still expecting
several more people which was true.

Secondly, I looked over again, at 7:35pm, and was shocked to see that in spite of the fact that all of our chairs were full except that last table, and it was only 7:35pm, someone
had pushed that last table away from the rest of our tables.

I rushed over, and said "We have to put that table back.  We still have more people coming."

We just looked at me like I was nuts, and somebody said something similar to, "We don't know that.  Sometimes people say 'yes' and don't show up".  ...And nobody budged.

I came back five minutes later to move the table back myself, because no one else was doing it, but by that time, someone else was seated at it.

I do not want to know who did that, I just don't want it to happen again.  Five minutes into the meeting is too early to give up on people and start giving away tables,
especially considering what happened next, which is the third thing
that disturbed me.

After that, two more people arrived for the Spanish meeting.  When the first person arrived, we couldn't find her a place at the tables, but we did greet her, and find her a chair
so she could sit at the edge of the group and participate in the
conversation.

However, when the second person arrived, we did not find him a chair or even greet him.

Note that as we have seen, as the meeting progresses, I, myself extract tables that we no longer need.  This is partly out of consideration for the other patrons, and partly to
force us to sit closer together, which I think is more cosy.  Just, I don't do it
only five minutes into the meeting.

If we had not given up up that table we would have had space for both of those last two people, but the table thing is a minor thing.

I keep telling people how proud I am of the fact that this is a friendly and welcoming group but we made a liar out of me.

So I have two requests.

Firstly, please do not give up tables until a much more significant time than five minutes has passed.  People do show up late.

Secondly, and more importantly, please welcome and greet people.

All of those people mentioned, including the couple that did not belong to our group should have been greeted.  The couple should have been greeted to gently remind them of the
oddness of sitting down at a table with a bunch of other people if you are not a
member of the group, and also, in case they WERE.

More importantly, that last gentleman should have been greeted and welcomed.  He left angry.

I still believe that this is a friendly and welcoming group.  Let's show people that it is true!

I am looking forward to seeing us at the meetings!

--Kichiji.

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