Huttonian has ranted before about speaking to the University of the Third Age (U3A) at Kelso and the pains and pleasures thereof. Today a different challenge: the newly created U3A at Eyemouth. The problem is that you have no idea what sort of audience to expect-apart from the fact that they are fellow crumblies of an uncertain age. But how many? At Kelso I got about 100 but they had been enticed by the AGM and then the doors locked from outside, or something. I am speaking about ' Background to Conflict in the Middle East ' A series of three lectures over two weeks. I wonder how much interest there now is in Eyemouth about what is happening in that region with all the overkill on TV (analogue, naturally) But if two or three are gathered there.....I'll have to do my thing. Reminiscent perhaps of the expert who turned up at an important seminar to find that he was the only person on the platform and the audience consisted of another man. He delivered his speech as (obviously badly) advertised. Got a polite round of applause from the sole spectator. Nodded graciously and started to tidy up his papers. 'Please don't go' said the guy from the floor' I am the second speaker'
Oh dear. My difficulty is that I have 90 unforgiving minutes to run .I was hoping to waffle for half an hour to forty five minutes and invite long comments and questions from the floor. Long waffly replies and a spiel about my book -'yes I seem to have brought a few copies with me if you have a chequebook about your person. Signed? Certainly' But no crowd no comment and no sales. Might be a stressful afternoon. I suppose I might fill in time with 'Oral Sex with a Duck' A good tale but wasted possibly on a bored chairman, two deaf and slumbering very Senior Cits and the cleaning lady anxious to have the room cleared so as she can get her work done.
Report later If I am spared.