I can hardly believe that I have been a member of the Junior League of San Antonio for 32 years – I used to think women who had been members for that long were old. I realize now that I was sadly mistaken.
When I think about the changes in the League over the last 32 years, however, I can believe every minute of that time has passed. For example, members were listed in the directory as Mrs. John Smith, not Jane Smith. Husbands’ professions were mentioned in the Bright Scrawl (it was published monthly) article about the new provisional but the Provisionals’ employment was ignored. We wore pantyhose to General Meetings. My Provisional placement was waiting tables at the Bright Shawl – where I learned to make a champagne cocktail, perhaps not the best example of Junior League training.
Of course, the changes in technology are astonishing. In 1979, we made copies with a mimeograph machine. (Does anybody know what that dinosaur is?) Needless to say, when the Xerox machine arrived, it changed our lives. And the IBM Correcting Selectric III typewriter was total luxury – there was a correcting tape right in the machine. I’m so grateful that the era of word processing had arrived by the time I served as Recording Secretary, a better example of Junior League training.
I haven’t mentioned the changes in communication. We didn’t even use answering machines in 1979. Voice mail and call waiting were huge innovations. When I was President of JLSA in 1995-96, my counterparts in other Leagues, and I were so grateful for fax machines – we could communicate almost instantaneously. Email was unimaginable then, and it seems unimaginable now to do without it. I can text, too, although my not-very-smart phone makes the process a little laborious.
I think it is safe to say that one thing hasn’t changed since 1979 and that is the motivation for being a member of the Junior League of San Antonio. In fact, I suspect the motivation has been constant since our founding in 1924. We are a group of women who want to make a difference in our community and who want to make friends while we do it. What wonderful memories I have of the last 32 years! What great hopes I have for the next 32 – and beyond!
-Alison Wenger Boone
2011-12 Sustainer Board Advisor