The Big Weekend

Another busy weekend, but certainly one of the best for a long time.

On Friday night J and I went out to dinner with our friends who had just returned from honeymoon. We were joined by Dave, Rich and Emma from Soul Beaver and spent (most of) the night at Browns in Oxford. I've been eating at this place on and off for nearly twenty years and always enjoy the atmosphere. Busy, chaotic and usually with very good food. We passed the ours chatting, joking, eating and drinking.

The last part of the night was spent at the Eagle and Child pub (where Tolkien and C.S. Lewis used to hang out) for what might have been one drink too many. Overall though, a great night out.

Saturday was something else. I spent most of the day rushing around, making a cake. Despite one false start (insane amounts of baking powder would have resulted in an exploding cake) and my putting icing sugar in the mix instead of caster sugar, it all turned out alright. The event for which I was making the cake was my parents' 50th wedding anniversary.

They were celebrating in a quiet way, at home, with just a few guests. J and I arrived with cake, champagne and enough decorations to shame a birthday party. All this was J's idea and, despite not being in their usual style, my folks seemed very pleased with the effect.

The day went very well. My mum and dad's happiness in being together was highlighted by the three guests, all of whom had lost their partners, and by J and I, still less than a year married. I look at my folks with enormous admiration for many reasons, not least the fact that they have created a happy home, maintained a loving (and still romantic) relationship and, of course, produced your truly. Before this gets too gushy I should add that I fully expect J and I to get to our 50th, so long as we can actually live that long (I would be in my 90s!)

If the excitement of Saturday was not enough J and I went out on Sunday to London to see the Pat Metheny Group. For the first time (ever, I think) I was late to a gig. The PMG were playing all of their new album, The Way Up. We witnessed the last half hour, which was a blistering symphony of musicianship and invention. There was a huge roar of approbation and a standing ovation at the end. For an 'encore' they played in various combinations, all with Metheny (still sporting the stripey top and wild hair he has had for ever) at the core. Tune after tune poured form this skillful band. Lyle Mays has to get special mention, as does Antonio Sanchez on drums. I could hear audience members gasping in places at the sheer audacity of the players. Mind you, I could also hear a conversation about binoculars (in many parts) and some general chuntering form the people around me.

With all this good stuff over, J and I wandered through Hammersmith, picking up some food and then driving home for a well earned sleep.


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