Monday, April 04, 2011
Spring Break Day Six continued
Last night's barbecue was great - only a fraction of the five thousand invited guests actually turned up so all was well and the onigiris sufficed.
Top left: I managed to get all the kids in one shot, quite by accident! Lena, Erica, Momoka, Ui, Fusa, Karin and Amy. Top right, Karin and Amy with the food. My sausage in bread idea didn't go down too well. I was the only one who ate it! Bottom left, Momoka and Lena set themselves up nicely with yard junk. Bottom right, Erica seemed to be the only one who chose to sensibly dress for the ACTUAL weather, not the weather we just hoped for.
Karin and Momoka arrived first, sans parents, and immediately set to playing very hard with Amy and Lena. Next Egami sans wife and daughter (hard out playing Volleyball) and the Nagakura family (Mum, Dad, 2 boys) arrived, and we fired up the barbies and got cooking and eating. N brought me some champers which me, K and E drank while he watched and asked for opinions about its flavor. Neither he, nor his wife, drink - but they own a bar. So he wanted to know if it was any good! It was fine of course, champers on a sunny afternoon always is!
Next Ozaki turned up. Single guy, DJ and all-round music freak, he brought his iPad with music channels and hooked it up to speakers he brought and set in the garden. Times like this I feel very lucky to have neighbors who are mostly either deaf or dead. A shop on one side, a river and cemetery out the back, a deaf old lady out the front, so I only worry about the young family next door. N was also complimenting how great our place is for a bbq. I have mixed feelings about my yard/garden, probably because I have NZ friends with better garden nous who have actual lawns, but in comparison to most of K's friends, it's a perfect bbq space, with double doors that open from from the kitchen and living rooms to the garden, fully walled so the children can't escape, and the river out the back means we have a feeling of space as there are no buildings on that side. When I thought about all the others guests' houses I realized it was true, we DO have the perfect garden for bbqs, and I should be grateful and not moan too much about its failings.
Left to right: Egami and Kanji; Ozaki and speaker; Nagakuras Kotaku and Megumi
After the first flush of cooking and eating we all sat down around the barbecues to keep warm and drank more wine, this time French chardonnay from a plastic bottle! Me and K handed out jackets for everyone to wear since it really is too early in the season for bbqs! We switched from the sunny reggae channel to Irish music on YouTube as the sun went down and I translated such Pogues gems as 'I am gooooing... I am goooing... where streams of whisky are floooowing" which everyone agreed was a pretty good idea.
The Harada parents finally arrived with little boy Yuki for Erica to play with. Hirakawa arrived sans family (wife and FOUR kids would have been a handful to feed!) More beer was drunk. E called for more wine, still not sure who brought it, red this time. More meat was barbecued and more people marveled over the risoni (nobody had ever seen it before). More jackets were handed out and I changed from my blue jewelled wedge sandals to my 12cm platform studded mules since Maki had a pair almost exactly the same. I then proceeded to fall all over the place so promptly gave up and switched back to the wedges. I do love those shoes though - but perhaps not for bbqs.
Finally the cold chased us inside, and we set up around the round table, heater on, almost felt like pulling out a nabe! In the meantime Osamu, Harada's brother arrived. Osamu is the drummer for the Sex Pistols cover band K plays in, and for another band with the guy who is bringing my new dishwasher on Tuesday, and the guy who is a DJ at the radio station where Nagakura and Kanji have their radio show. Hirakawa and Egami are the singer and guitarist in K's Rolling Stones cover band. Osamu's brother, Maki's husband, also plays guitar in another band with their sister and the electrician again, who didn't come but popped in for a few minutes the night before.
I will admit to not remembering much after this. Hirakawa is a baker and brought some very delicious cakes which we all ate. K brought out the whisky. He tells me they were all gone by midnight, and by the state of the kitchen and living room and garden the next day, it looks like everyone had a go at cleaning up, if not quite finished....