Got up early to complete yesterday's blog and get ready for a long day chairing an important meeting of 'AVP NEEM' the North East and East Midlands branch of Alternatives to Violence Project, a UK organisation (AVP Britain) which organises workshops on conflict resolution, in prisons and for the wider community. I owe a lot to AVP as I could have got into big trouble for my lack of self contol during my 20's, when I did an AVP workshop and learnt about what my triggers were, how violence starts and where it ends up and how to manage that energy and emotion creatively and sustainably. I believe that AVP is part of 'social sustainability' as it promotes social cohesion and helps hot-heads, bullies, those bullied or abused deal with their problem. It enables people to learn how to communicate in a non-violent way. It has helped me with my environmental activism, NVDA (non violent direct action), family life, my work as an entertainer and many of my inter-personal relationships.
I cycled up to New Earswick to Hartrigg Oaks where the meeting was due to be held, and as usual, was a few minutes early and waited for the others to arrive. When a few had come, I asked one person how Harry was, he lives at Hartrigg Oaks and used to be the Treasurer of AVP York but he has gone blind and is now in the care-home part of the Oaks, so I asked if I could visit him. He has begun to develop dementure but he did work out where he knew me from and we had a nice chat, just 10 mins, but it cheered him up, he said.
By this time the other five AVP NEEM (Alternatives to Violence Project North East and East Midlands) representatives had arrived so my chairing abilities were put into operation and we had a 2 hour session in the morning, lunch, and several hours in the afternoon. The structure of the organisation has changed and AVP Britain now has 7 members which are regions. We have a lot of organising to do and it was a full meeting.
I managed to pull it to a close at 4.30 and bomb off to Heslington Road where Richard was just shutting up the shop, he gave me 2 sacks of 'ready to compost' stuff and two trays of kiwis which weren't selling and were surplus to requirements so I got 2 trays... sounds like a kiwi leather to be created.
Anna my sister rang soon after I got in and said she was near to York, and arrived 10 mins later in time for tea, then they all watched Dr Who, which I don't like, and immediately after that the taxi I'd booked came and my boys and their Aunty went to see Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat at the Grand Opera House.
Gill and I played scrabble and watched telly. Got a phone call during the interval saying they were ok and enjoying it. They got home at 10.30pm which is the latest they've ever been up.
Both happy though, although the youngest very tired.