The 5th of the UK group, and the two American women, arrived when we were having lunch. About ten past one -- announced start was halfpast -- we picked up all the gear and moved out to the usual spot in "ambush alley", a semi-open square with a circle of seats where two ordinary roads join the pedestrianised High Street, and split into groups at the north and south ends. We put the sound system at the south end away from possible sources of likely problems, and had one or two people talk to adjacent shops to check there was no problem. We told the police there was no public order reason not to use use it and it would be going on shortly (grumble, grumble; the relevant department manager was away and we were dealing with new people). On it went with Hubbard spouting "there was no Christ" and body thetans that go "vroom"!
Helium balloons at the north end -- the nice silk sreened ones with big space alien eyes -- and DukeTheDog stood on top of a bin, the clamshell and the sound system at the south end. Roland was solidly on "scientology is a scam, scientogy says you're full of dead space aliens." There is a nice detailed Poole flyer which he posted earlier. Basic schpiel, but the mic went on later and I did some short bits on Richard Collins, History of Man, etc, and single verses from songs. Xemu smiled on us and an "overcast, occasional rain" day became warm spring sunlight. I stood in the shade side of the square, and took a few cocacola breaks during the day.
Towards 4pm we stond down and gathered everything together at the top end. Standing next to Duke I did a bit about the judge's dog and sang "they're drowning my doggie in the Poo-l". Then up to a pub neat the station, and onto the train back to London.
Wog science predicted rain, but the mighty power of Xenu soon cleared away those pesky clouds and led by Duke the dog the usual suspects gathered in sunshine outside the winning Org in this year's Birthday Game (TM). A minion was sent out to collect a copy of Roland's new leaflet. Since it describes _all_ the ways the CoS takes your money it was two sheets instead of the usual one, so I guess it took them the rest of the day to write up the Knowledge Report (TM).
The afternoon was spent on the High Street, where Xemu handed out balloons and plenty of leaflets were distributed. The populace were generally receptive. I was approached by one lady who said her grandchildren used to be scared of coming down the street because of being accosted by clipboard carriers. She had never been bothered until recently, and advanced the opinion that they must be getting desperate if they were trying to recruit grandmothers!
Special thanks to Minton Money for providing a balloon inflater from Boston.
My friend, whom I will refer to by her initials, ARC (yes, really :)), and I arrived at Waterloo a bit late for the 9:30 train, so we got the next one, a mere 20 minutes later. Upon arrival in Poole, we follwed the directions we had been given and soon found the ARSCC (wdne) contigent having lunch. We joined up and prepared.
For the picket itself, I did balloons. I destroyed my manicure and cut my finger tying the damn things, and my legs still hurt from the repeated squatting to tie on strings. I did get good at it, though. Gave out all of 'em. I hurt, but it's worth it to see a budding young SP.
ARC went shopping, then returned to take photos. She ended up disseming to a curious family. If the group photo she took comes out well, she'll scan it in.
We had a great time. We would do future pickets elsewhere, but our schedules give us only one week of vacation a year. So I'll have to concentrate on Boston :).
-HiLary, #193, SP2
A bright sunny Spring day in Poole; excellent picketing weather. Seven SPs - including two from the US!, flown in specially by the ARSCC (Global Outreach Org) - paraded in the shopping centre, handing out flyers (Xenu, Lisa, Space Alien, and Poole). The flyers were all Rolands excellent work. Indeed, the Poole flyer was brilliant, and I'm sure can be amended for any town. BTW: Roland deserves congratulations for his efforts. (We contribute to the printing cost, but I'm well aware that Roland makes the major effort.) $cn will rue the day they conned him. (And the day they assaulted him).
Also deserving of congratulations (is this getting smarmy? :-)) were the prop team (Dave, HP), and Jens in the Xenu costume.
This was a cheery occasion. Lord Xe[m,n]u was present, Duke the Dog, balloons for the children, loudspeakers and we even had a enormous blue clam, tastefully tied with pink ribbon. (None of these provided by me :-).
I am not a regular at Poole - I have attended more demos in London - and I was really encouraged at the public's response. Maybe because there were more locals than in London(?), there was lots of thanks and apprecioation of our work. I think that the Poole residents are very pissed off by Scn and I was often asked "What can I do?". - I just advised spreading the leaflets, and calling your local councillor to protest at deceptive selling. (Any other ideas?)
Equally cheery was the lack of bodyrouters. I don't know where they all went, but Poole was the happier for their absence. But I expect they will be back.
So will we!
And I also suspect the Poole Org will soon take its rightful place among Roland's Trophy Room collection :-)
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