President's Message

President's Message January 2021

Dear Members of U3A Clarence,

What a crazy year 2020 has been.  It came as a shock for us all, an unplanned event.  But some past unplanned events that have happened to me have left my wife in stitches: I bought replacement windscreen wiper blades, took old ones out -  carefully measured lengths and cut the new pair to size.  The second wiper blade was longer than the first!  I had to get a second pair.

I was doing some gardening in the front of our house when I dug up an old cable that shouldn’t have been there.  So I cut it off and pulled the rest of the cable up and binned it.  My wife then came out and informed me that our phone was dead…….. We called Telstra for a new cable.

We had a motel once and were preparing for a conference.  They needed a whiteboard.  So I ordered a 2.4m x 1.2m glossy white melamine sheet and asked the store to cut it to size for me.  Unfortunately my metres and mms got mixed up and we ended up with 16 small boards 600mm x 300mm.  Anyway, that’s enough frivolity at my expense!

Your committee has met regularly during the year to monitor the options available for U3A to continue.  The Library has imposed very strict measures to minimise the spread of COVID-19.  The numbers permitted in lecture rooms and with less rooms being available made it impossible to continue classes during 2020.  With Library spaces more limited, proposed programs in 2021 will be extended to Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  Crowds exceeding limits set by the Library mean that our regular morning tea get-togethers will not be allowed, nor will the sing-alongs, but line dancing is now permitted.

At year’s end with Tasmania looking in good shape, the committee decided that a Christmas party should be held.  Beth Jeffrey, our social coordinator did a wonderful job in organising the lunch at the Lindisfarne Rowing Club – what a fantastic position on the water.  Olive Tree Catering put on a real Christmas spread and we enjoyed several interesting presentations, and poems by Chris Bishop.

 To investigate alternate locations for the conduct of future U3A activities I have had discussions with the Property Officers of the Clarence City Council: Tracy Sparks and Lesley Roland; David O’Byrne, Franklin Member of State Parliament and Julie Collins MP, Federal Member for Franklin.

On behalf of the committee I wish everyone a safe and fulfilling New Year.

Len Spaans 

President, U3A Clarence

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