Dear CaterSPILlars,

It all started when Noor called us (Lisa and Pien) that we had become the 39th board. I (Pien) had no idea who she was, but that changed quickly after the summer, when the board was on the policy weekend. We (Noor and Lisa) already knew each other after meeting at our Freshmen Weekend in 2018, going out and eating ‘kipcorns’ is a real bonding experience.

The year started off with the Change of Boards GA, where we became the official managing directors (dagelijks bestuur – ‘DB’). This means that we three are in charge of daily business, such as managing the mailbox, spendings and contact with the faculty. The tasks of the DB are mainly on the background and therefore a little underexposed. As treasurer I mainly keep track of the finances of the SPIL. This means accounting, making a budget and spending a lot of hours in the common room. As Commissioner of Introduction, I also oversee the Introduction Committee. I attend their meetings and stay in contact with the chair. As the secretary, I basically spend my days planning and writing, this includes the newsletter, General Assemblies and the Constitution Borrel. As President, the main thing that keeps me busy  is staying in contact with all those around me. So for example, I am texting my board members about activities they are planning, I am in contact with the faculty, and I am in contact with our sister associations and the hall way associations. Furthermore, I oversee the SPIL-weekend committee, who were organizing an amazing trip to Texel (before the Corona crisis hit). The main task is to keep an overview of the association and try to follow the general policy guidelines.

However, being on the board isn’t all formal. We also enjoy the informal activities that come with a board year, such as a lot of Constitution Borrels (CoBo’s), a.k.a., a lot of open bar and late nights. The CoBo’s aren’t only fun, they are also dangerous. Almost everybody of the board got injured at some point in time. Mostly because of all the brassing but it was definitely worth it (brassen is the conquering of an item by getting it out of the room of the event, when you have successfully done so, the organising association needs to do something for you in return)! The first time we went to a CoBo, we were not officially the board yet, so we tagged along with the 38th. It was the CoBo of ‘De Leidsche Flesch’ and we had no idea what to expect. At some point the idea came to ‘bras’ the guest book, and that’s where our love for CoBo’s began. The action that came into play, the partners we made to pull it off and the adrenaline rushing through you while it is going on – definitely worth it!

Like we mentioned in the beginning, you get to know each other very quickly and very soon. You see each other every day in the common room, at an activity or at a CoBo. Some of you might have noticed this, but in the common room in Leiden people have their “own” computer. With that computer comes a chair and don’t think about switching the chairs because board members are very attached to their chairs and will get angry if it is not behind their desk. Luckily there is a nerf gun (which was a very nice CoBo gift) in the common room so people can express their anger.

Since the 6th of June 2019, we have grown to a crazy little clan, who is sometimes a little too up-to-date on each others personal lives, but wouldn’t wish to see it any other way. The ‘Rona cut all our physical activities, throwing us into a questioning spiral of what we could do with the rest of our board year. As it has probably done to everyone’s lives, it also threw us off a little. But, because we have got each other to throw some positivity at the rest, we have been making the best out of the situation. That is one of the things that we are very proud of: that this group of people can take stressful and challenging situations and turn them into something positive.

With love and 39 hugs and kisses,

On behalf of the XXXIXth board, ‘CaterSPILlar’,

Noor Saris, Pien Wissink and Lisa Pieters