Suzi (k00kaburra) wrote,

Another year, another holiday party...

If a table is set with free food, and a bar dispensing free glasses of wine is open, the whole world shows up.

That's what you'd think, anyway.  Every year, RHA hosts a holiday party for the residents, and every year attendance climbs.  People can't resist the combination of complimentary hors d'oeuvres and booze.  This year, my boss reckoned we got close to two hundred people, which is definitely the best turnout yet.

But when you think about it, two hundred isn't that big.  There are roughly 430 homes in the complex.  Let's suppose that at least two people live in each home, because for every single widow living by herself there's probably someone with a kid or two to balance it out.  That's 860 people, minimum.  If I were to guess, I'd say there's just around one thousand souls living in this gated community, since there are plenty of roommates and children bulking up the numebrs.

So for a party for all the residents, we get about 20% of the people to actually show up.

I wonder if that's a good amount or not?

Certainly, that's about all we plan for.  There was very little food left over at the end of the evening.  The Clubhouse was bustling and crowded and people were spilling out into the patio, so we could not have accommodated more people.

But if another 10% of the residents showed up - which would still be less than a third of the total population - I wonder what that would look like.  The demographics at RHA are changing so quickly!  We had a sizable number of children at the holiday party for the first time in decade or two - probably about ten of them in all, running around and eating all the cookies on the dessert table.  As the main body of "original owner" residents who bought their homes when they first went for sale in the 1970s age up and die off, it'll be interesting to see if the next generation will have the same interest in maintaining these community events.  Attendees were either in their 70s and 80s, retired and silver-haired, or late-age parents (children were born when parents were in late 30s or early 40s) with children under 10.  Anyone single or child-free between the ages of twenty and fifty were no-shows.

It makes me wonder where they were.  Were all these people working?  At other holiday parties?  (Unlikely - it's a Wednesday night!)  Just not interested in the social group that attends these events?  Hmm.  That last one is quite possible, although as I was hustling around the room attending to this and that, I made sure to tell  every resident I talked to what kind of job I'm looking for and my current career goals in the hopes that they'd think of me if they heard of an opening at a museum somewhere.  I mean, to live at RHA you need a certain income level, and many of these people made good money as VPs or CEOs at Silicon Valley's major tech corporations.  There's one resident in particular who floats everywhere on a cloud of entitlement because he was once a vice president at Apple.

But I suppose that as this old vanguard dies off or moves away, those parents will become the new drivers of RHA events, and all will continue on.  As long as the paycheck shows up, I can't complain - although I hope I won't be around for too many more of these parties, because I'd really like to be working elsewhere by next holiday season.
Tags: christmas, holidays, party, rha, work

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