I don’t recollect the exact month I first arrived at Oasis. I think it was 2005, as I nervously headed for Barbara’s house where Oasis met on the first Friday and third Saturday of every month since 1987.
Was I nervous…Yes I was. I went up and down the road several times, because at Barbara’s house I counted 10 cars and there couldn’t be that many cross-dressers in Norfolk!
As the meeting went by I realised how much of a commitment Barbara gave her ladies, not only providing a safe place by giving up her home to sometimes as many as 20 ladies, but also preparing food for the ladies often assisted by her daughter, Steph and good friend Peter.
In 2008, after Barbara had a fall, I felt that to future proof Oasis, which had given me that lifeline when I needed it the most, I must look for a new venue which might replace the Saturday meetings. So in July we found such a venue, a training centre run by Age UK, in Spixworth. We successfully ran meeting there for a whole year and then moved to the venue we now have on the southern outskirts of Norwich.
Without a doubt I have had a very happy ten years of running Oasis, with the support of both Ann, Vicky and the many people who have done their bit to keep Oasis going.
At Oasis some people have come and gone, some have never gone, and other have come and gone and come back again. That is the nature of a transgender group. We are always happy to see new and returning members as the travel on their gender journey.
Although apprehensive at the beginning of this year, when I announced my retirement of running Oasis, if someone(s) would take over the group, by the end of the year I was confident that Oasis will continue and build in strength.
I am so pleased that Geri and Phyllis will take over the running of the meetings and Serena doing the MC role (Mistress of Ceremonies). I shall continue to run the website and be the first contact for new members and outside agencies who request our help.
The activities and dates for next year are now out and it looks to be a very exciting year. I wish the new management the very best for 2019.