Or, as it happens, NOT choosing the curtains.
On reflection I think this was the only outcome possible when 11 people forgather (8 women and 3 men) and are faced with 3 big books of fabric swatches. An exercise doomed to fail from the outset. The fabric designs were, without exception, some of the most horrid known to mankind - either big 'n' bold or big 'n' bland. Throw into the pot a half acre of floor the colour of a mushy pea and a choice of chairs upholstered in blue, gold or claret and the potential combinations become mind boggling...
In truth I expect any of the fabrics would work - I mean, who actually studies the curtains in village halls? Very few people I expect - except when the evening's speaker is so dull that counting the floor tiles or repeats on the fabric is a more attractive option than listening. I have done that.
Tonight nobody could make their mind up or be assertive enough to insist on fabric 'A' with chair 'C' rather than fabric 'B' and chair 'D'. Should it be orangey-sand or sandy-orange with swirls. With a little green. Not blue. Definitely NOT blue. And nobody, but nobody, likes pink with orange. A lone voice pipes up in favour of blue. And blue chairs......to be shouted down. Gold chairs. With black legs. It is after all a Big Decision. I really don't know what the answer is - I suppose I will go with the majority decision - this isn't the time and place for mouthing off design-wise, it's their village, their hall and I'm no'but a relative incomer.
Two hours in and with no decision made we are all losing the will to live and wilting - the heating system is running at full bore, being tested maybe. Little sub-groups of red-faced people have formed and cluster around open windows to gulp gratefully at the cool night air. (It's good to know that the heating is working so well. It is like spending an evening in the tropics without the luxury of the Indian Ocean to dip in.) One by one people drift away homewards, nothing chosen.
I leave too. Looking back as I climb the lane onto Marton Crest I see the new building in the valley below me, still lit against the night sky. The village's only street light which stood at the end of the old hall has been demolished so the new building is now the only source of light and this is probably one of the only times to date it has been lit at night. That's why it looks so unusual I suppose - we're not used to it being there, occupying this bit of space, not quite settled in the landscape. It's rather exciting, this wonderful new facility, seeing it take shape and looking forward to when we can actually use it and call it our own.
PS 601 posts since February 2006. I was in the village hall that night as well. Looks like I really should get out more....