Monday, June 30, 2008

Heels, Pearls, and the Classic Girl

I made my annual trek to Alabama for Grand Assembly this weekend. For those of you who don't know, I was a member of the International Order of the Rainbow for Girls from the time I was 13 until I reached majority age. I served the Alabama Grand Assembly as Grand Worthy Advisor in 1999-2000 and currently serve as a Grand Executive and Chairman of the Ritual Competition. As always, there was much drama and many interesting moments over the weekend. I departed the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport Thursday morning after an hour and a half delay and still made my connector in Dallas with 10 minutes to spare. I am just happy I didn't encounter the troubles traveling to Alabama that I did last year.

Thursday evening was the Informal Opening where the dignitaries from the other Masonic bodies are introduced and asked to speak. This is always a long affair with lots of introductions and boring speeches. I still win the award for the shortest Informal Opening ever coming in at just around an hour and a half. This year's lasted about two and a half hours. The best moment of the evening was when the Grand Worthy Advisor was introducing the Most Puissant Grand Master of the Scottish Rite. I could have sworn she said the Most Pubescent Grand Master. I was laughing so hard that I was crying because she had to repeat his title about 5 times during the course of the introduction.

Friday morning was the Formal Opening including the initiation and memorial service. The active girls did a pretty good job with the ritualistic work and we welcomed three new sister into the order. I missed a portion of the opening since I had to locate roses for the Rose Lecture that was to be performed after the initiation was complete. I also got fussed at for not being "Rainbow appropriate" because I wasn't wearing panty hose. Well, I didn't really care and no one important said anything to me. However, the person who choose to say something was still complaining about it to my mom two days later. After getting to spending some time with Ra and her girls, I had to head back to the hotel to judge ritual competition. Ritual work was my strong point when I was active which was proven by me winning the ritual competition 5 times so I was disappointed in the performance of the girls and the lack of competitors. Once that was done it was time to dress for Fun Night. This year's theme was A Night at the Movies so I pulled out my Marilyn Monroe wig along with the white dress Mom found for me. I was a hit! Since the DeMolays where having Conclave at the same time, they were invited to Fun Night. I noticed a guy shortly after getting there who I thought was one of the advisors but turned out to be the State Master Councilor (meaning he was 19). Later on in the evening, he came over to talk to me. I must say I was flattered that he not only thought I was one of the active girls but also a student at UT. It killed me to tell him I was 30 and I felt so bad because he was so embarrassed.

Saturday ending up being a shorter session than planned since we didn't have any babies for baby dedication or anyone for majority. I must say I was glad that the day wasn't any longer than necessary. Once the new grand officers for 2008-2009 were named, much drama ensued. There is always the girl who thinks she is going to get named Grand Worthy Associate Advisor and when that doesn't happen, not only does she get upset but then you have an upset mama to deal with. We also had some hurt feelings over who didn't get named State Mother Advisor. However, I was pleased with the decision since my mom was named State Mother Advisor. I was also given a new appointment as Chairman of the Ritual Competition in addition to being placed back on the Executive Committee. Southern Belle competition followed the morning session and then we attended the DeMolay Conclave installation that evening. This brought back many memories for me. My brother, Clay, is a Past State Master Councilor and I am a Past State Sweetheart. I haven't attended any DeMolay functions since my time as an active girl. Zach, the State Master Councilor, gave a very impressive presentation of the Flower Talk that had everyone in tears by the time he finished. They following the evening with a dance and I cut a rug with the best of them. It was great to see Chris who served as State Master Councilor during my year as Grand Worthy Advisor.

Sunday consisted of the Grand Cross investiture and the installation of officers. At Grand Cross, I served as Sister of Victory, a position I have held many times before. As usually, I knocked it out of the park. I received complements afterward since the people on the sidelines could actually hear me speak without the microphone. I was also the Installing Officer at the installation for Sister Lisa, our new Grand Worthy Advisor. Once the sessions were over with, I was able to relax a bit. Mom and I headed to dinner with the Lewallens and Nina.

Monday I finally got to sleep in a bit since all we had planned was lunch with Ra and Auntie Martha and then a trip to the airport. Lucky for me all my flights were on time and I arrived back in Austin about 7 PM. Jenny picked me up and we spotted for dinner on the way back to the house. While I was happy to be home, I didn't want to leave Alabama. This was the first time in the past year that I actually felt like I wanted to move home. Now I am trying to figure out how I can make plans to move back to Alabama in the next couple of years. I am definitely going to finish school first so I can sit for the CPA exam here. But, once I am done with that there is nothing to stop me or keep me in Texas.


Susangalique said...

wow, thats a great grand assembly rap up!

It was great to see you and get to goof around with you between meetings.

many congrats to your mom

CraftyHope said...

You summed up the week pretty well. I haven't had the energy to go into all of that myself and may just link to yours with some additions of what I did myself.
I didn't realize anyone was upset about the SMA appointment. I need the gossip!! I'm just glad the drama is over and everyone seemed a bit happier by Sun afternoon. I'm so glad you were able to come in again this year. We Mobile PGWA's ROCK!!!

Gina said...

Woo-hoo! Moving back to the AL!

GrayStar said...

Okay so that was a much better ad more specific wrap-up than I did! lol. I don't have many pics and they are all of the officers on Sunday but I went ahead and posted them on flicker.
Good to see you and congrats to your mom!