I’ll be honest, at my age I didn’t think that I’d be starting any new jobs.
I thought that I was quite happy carrying on with my little routine, it was simple and just varied enough to keep me interested, but after receiving an offer from a friend who had just reached retiring age I decided to throw in my current lifestyle and trade it in for something a lot more hectic and, dare I say it, interesting!
My new vocation has me travelling all over Somerset.
I’m on the hunt for spaces to hire out for parties, weddings, celebrations – you name it! The business that my friend was running is really quite ingenious. He works off the basis that most publicly hired halls (such as village halls, church halls or school halls) are managed by volunteers who tend to care less about their job as time begins to wear on. He knew this from experience as he’d tried to organise his granddaughter’s birthday party in a village hall, only to find the management surrounding the particular venue was appalling. My mate decided that he could take the responsibility of managing all the public spaces in a given area, thus taking the burden of responsibility off good-natured folk (who were perhaps not best suited for the task) and also making a pretty penny at the same time.
There are dozens of halls for hire near me, all of which I’ve now taken responsibility for which is both an exciting challenge and a serious responsibility. I have keys for all of these venues, as well as a black book containing all of their security alarm codes. Not only do I have to deal with the physical responsibility of having access to these properties, I must keep an eye on a very important phone which serves as the first point of contact for all of these venues. From living a very peaceful existence of meditation and reading, I have now been thrust into an exciting world where my phone is ringing 10 times a day and email enquiries are constantly streaming in – it’s stressful, but fun!
There’s a lot more to this job than I initially thought there was.
Each day I need to reply to any messages that have been sent to me, answering any number of questions about the amenities on offer at one of these halls and consulting a spreadsheet to check the availability. Most people want to take a look around their party venue before they book it, so I often find myself jumping in my car and heading off to a hall to meet some new people and give them the ‘grand tour’. Then there are the actual events to squeeze in too. Sometimes I might be shooting off to several different places in the course of the day, opening up a school hall for a Golden Wedding Anniversary Party in the morning, showing a young couple around potential new reception venues in the afternoon and then setting up a hall for a Murder Mystery Night in the evening.
It’s all rather thrilling and I’m finding myself rather taken with my new occupation!