One night in 2008 is when my relationship with HoCoPoLitSo began as a last minute favor for a co-worker. I said yes to serving as a volunteer at an event, and I am forever grateful I said yes.
That evening, I made the grave mistake of assuming what the occasion was going to entail and what sorts of people I would meet there. In my mind’s eye I had imagined Ego the food critic from the Pixar movie Ratatouille. Perhaps noses high in the air, shamelessly quoting pieces of literature as they try to “one up” each other on their knowledge base.
Boy, was I wrong.
When I first arrived at the event I met the many board members who were both happy and grateful that I was there to volunteer, and as the event commenced I had the chance to meet and talk to the audience members who were attending the annual Irish Evening. Among the audience members, the age range was as wide as the sea and conversations were varied from the intellectual to the, “Hey there have you heard of this new author?” I was in heaven! And I continued to volunteer for HoCoPoLitSo events for many years.
I’ve always been a “closet” fan of literature and the arts although I never quite found the venue to both learn and share my appreciation for the art. And now I had finally found my tribe, and I could come out of the literary closet and share my love of arts and literature with others. And no Pixar character in sight to date!
Recently when I was asked to join the Board of Directors, I enthusiastically accepted and felt as though the highest honor had been bestowed upon me. In the few meetings I’ve since attended I realize just how much work goes into every event, down to the very last detail and perhaps the most surprising revelation is how many events HoCoPoLitSo puts on within the calendar year. There’s constant planning, brain-storming, idea swapping, and meticulous work to bring as many events to the public as possible.
I was once told, “Anything worth having is worth working hard for”, and this is definitely an organization worth working hard for.
-Andrea L. Martinez
Member, HoCoPoLitSo Board of Directors Member and long-time volunteer