...what should have been a straight forward Zoom Meeting became fraught with challenges. Due to the Provincial Zoom account being booked, the meeting was going to be held using W.Bro. White's 'free' zoom account, you know, the one that gives you 40 minutes...
Well, the booking was made, the invitations were sent with planning ahead (so he thought) to have an additional meeting booked in case of running over. All was planned with W.Bro. Paul Howard -Baker the Scribe and all seemed fine.
On the evening all started well enough, members and visitors arriving, W.Bro. Nic was confident that all was well. That was until W.Bro. Paul Howard- Baker tries to get in! The phones started ringing, the advice being offered from those on line (all experienced Zoomers) was relayed and eventually after several attempts, and about 20 minutes, W.Bro. Paul 'arrived' slightly warm around the collar and no-doubt muttering oaths that might not have been strictly masonic but heartfelt never the less!
Remember the 40 minutes? Well, by the time we'd settled down that has almost gone so the business started with the Dispensation and first matters dealt with. The Deputy Provincial Secretary then had to give warning of the time running out and prepared everyone to join on the next meeting code and pass word. It seemed simple enough.
On starting the new meeting, a few attendees made the transition successfully, however.... the phones started ringing, some people were accessing the new meeting using the previous codes, those trying the new code could only see that the Host (remember him, the Dep Sec...?) was 'in another meeting' and so on and so forth. Eventually, 15 of the original 18 were able to complete the meeting. The Master for the ensuing year was elected as was the treasurer, the Accounts were received and accepted and a donation of £500 to the DMCA was proposed, seconded and agreed.
The meeting was then closed in as much harmony as we could muster. Thank you to the W.C.N. officers, brethren and visitors for their forbearance.
As for W.Bro. Nic at the end of the evening...well.... just about sums it up!
A later conversation with W.Bro. Alan Cockman, Nic was asked 'what the heck happened there then...? I gave up and poured myself a nice warming Scotch!'
Oh, I wish. How many days left of Lent?.....