Life, Running

Party Time

You know you’ve had a successful party when, despite two good downpours and the need to hold down the collapsible (and occasionally collapsing) gazebo when the gusts whipped up for a short time, everyone remains in good humour, and eats and drinks well. Such was the case yesterday, when some of Anne’s siblings and mine, as well as an assortment of nieces, nephews, children and a mother, over thirty people in total, came to ours for a family shindig.

We don’t have the biggest of houses, but we do have a nice long garden, so we were hoping for a continuation of the glorious week day weather for Saturday. The forecast, however, wasn’t looking all that happy. Sometimes it was rain all afternoon, with 30 mph wind gusts, sometimes the winds calmed down to 25. Either way, I was being a negative pain in the backside all week to Anne, who firmly believed another forecasting website, which painted a rosier future.

A toddler with a chocolate ice cream face and a chocolatey top
Alf, enjoying his nanny’s home made chocolate ice cream. He binned the empty cone

As it turned out we were both right, in parts. For the vast majority of the day, the rain held off, and a blue sky and jovial sun were frequently spotted. Our two families mingled, children ran amok, and our week long efforts to give the house and garden a really good spring clean were worth it. We’d borrowed some extra garden furniture from the neighbours, and brought down some of Alf’s toys that were waterproof and everyone went home happy.

Ironically, even though we were well stocked up on the booze, I only ended up having the odd glass of fizz or Pimms, because when you’re hosting, it’s no good getting too soporific until the puddings have been dished out. And surprisingly, despite my glum feelings for last week’s half, I felt like I still wanted to be clear headed enough to get a long run in today.

Is this a sign of maturity?

Probably not, but there has been a shift in my perspective. Possibly since I’ve had this bee in my bonnet about attempting another marathon next year. And as I’ve got another half at the beginning of September, I’ve not got much time to sit around.

Although I have zero wish to give up alcohol, I have noticed, in the last year or two, that it goes to my head much quicker, and makes my body, as well as my head, ache the following day if I have a few too many. It could all be part of the pre-menopause stage. Having three older sisters all currently going through ‘the change’, I’m being uber-vigilant for the signs in myself. However, as I’ve always had a memory like a sieve, and as my body lately seems set on dumping out my eggs more quickly than normal, I can’t work out if anything’s imminent.

At the rate the ‘free’ world is going, by the time I am in need of it, HRT will probably be a banned substance, and drug companies will probably be switching their product lines to Viagra.

But! Have a deep breath, and think back to the party.

What with one thing and another, it has been rather wonderful for the immediate clan to catch up on a purely social occasion. Anne’s mum, who is the final parent standing for the two of us, held court beneath the more sturdy, wooden gazebo, and it was so nice for our two families to sit and relax and get to know one another, while some smooth jazz playlist emanated from my little speaker. The last time we attempted it was four years ago, in March, when Anne turned sixty and our event was attacked by the ‘Beast from the East’, as that particular meteorological phenomenon was dubbed. At least we didn’t need any ice for the drinks back then.

Hopefully, it won’t be another four years ‘til the next party, but in the meantime, there are a few pieces of pudding to finish off.