I am really starting to enjoy this 'putting myself about' stuff. Following last night's Strictly Come Dancing, I went to a luncheon do in Four Crosses this afternoon, where there were another 200 people, all intent on having a good time as they raised money for the Macmillan Nurses. And again, I was struck by there being not one single person looking over my shoulder to catch the eye of someone more 'important'. I've been involved in politics for so long that I've forgotten how nice people not working at the politics/media interface can be.
I heard one punter make a £50 wager that I would win Montgomeryshire at the General Election. The downside of course is that there was another punter willing to risk £50 that I wouldn't. Trouble with this is that one family now has a financial interest in my losing!
I'd been agonising about how direct I should be in this sort of 'subtle' canvassing - and I've found that the easiest way to broach the subject is to ask something like "Do you reckon that I have any chance of winning?" It sort of invites the response "I hope so". It was all going rather well, especially when I took over the job of going around asking if anyone wanted to buy raffle tickets. Very subtle, I thought - and I was having a really good response. And then Eileen showed me how its done. She emerged from the kitchen with an exercise book with "PLEDGES TO SUPPORT GLYN IN THE GENERAL ELECTION" printed in big letters all over the cover - and started demanding that everyone sign up. And they did. I was staggered. Even the bloke who had wagered £50 on me to lose, signed up. If any of the pledgers have not voted by 2100 hours on election day, I fully expect them to receive a call from Eileen. It ain't subtle - but who is to say that she isn't right. If Churchill hadn't gone for 'Total War' in 1940, we'd be taking our orders from Berlin today.