Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Marvelous Golden Moments

I'm back in Ann Arbor, scrambling to finish organizing our "Evening For Africa" fundraiser before Sunday. And so the day was spent tromping around downtown to ask local businesses to donate to our silent auction, which until today only had 2 items. (Some awesome jewelry from the Silver Crow and a basket of Alaffia body products from the co-op, both in Marquette.)

The day got off to a rough start. For some reason I just felt really unsure of myself, scattered and awkward. It didn't help that most of the businesses I specifically wanted to visit didn't open until 11 (it was just after 9). Or that the first business I approached very dismissively answered my pitch with, "Fine, fine. Just leave me your stuff."

To which I replied something along the lines of, "....Uhhhhhhh, stuff?"

Oy. Smack forehead. Go home and whip up a short letter explaining who we are and why we're fundraising. Print off a couple dozen. Return downtown. Remember to wear gloves this time.

One deer-in-the-headlights moment at a time I will learn how to do this job properly!

I got a lot of maybe's - some of them more promising than others. I'm expecting quite a few calls - some of them more likely than others. Got a handful of regretful no's. Got one or two unapologetic no's, come to think of it.

Then there were the marvelous golden moments when people said YES.

The owner of Elixir Vitae Coffee & Tea handed me two $20 gift cards without a moment's hesitation. I don't think I'd even finished my sentence.
A worker at one shop volunteered her own time as a professional photographer even though all I'd asked about was the store.
Bivouac (Yikes. This is about the 10th time today I have spelled that word and I am still spelling it a different way each time...) didn't even ask who we were or what we do until after they'd handed over a $25 gift card.
Dawntreader gave me a $40 gift certificate as soon as they heard the word "literacy."
The owner of La Marsa Mediterranean restaurant refused to give me a gift card because he wants to run a week long promotion instead where he will donate 20% of the bill of anyone who brings in our coupon.

And at the end of my long day I came home to discover that someone has made the largest donation yet. As a result, we have raised more than $400 in 4 days! 

Today was frustrating. It was tiring and stressful and I am really, really worried my event is not going to be nearly as successful as I'd hoped. No matter how excited I am about our progress so far, I will probably not sleep easy until we hit at least our minimum $5,000 mark and secure our spot on Global Giving.

And yet... there's those marvelous golden moments.

Today was a good day.

No comments:

Post a Comment