MontRet Celebrations! My Life 06 OCT 2008

Harley Davidson SidecarSaturday was party day, and after scurrying around to get everything set up at the Montgomery clan stronghold, it was time to sit back, absorb the agonizingly painful way Western Province was falling out of the Absa Currie Cup and wait for the guests to arrive – all of whom were surprisingly late!

The event was the dual celebration of Retha’s 25th and Monty’s 57th birthday that had both happened on Friday and so Saturday was deemed ‘Big Braai’ night, with a huge fire from the indoor braai heating up the stoep while outside the twin Webers patiently cooked six chickens’ gooses, three of which had a beer bottle rather unceremoniously shoved up their arse.

Family and friends from both parties were on hand to join in on the celebrations, with even the Lotter clan well represented with Mom and Pops (back fresh from their month long USA stint) and Claire bringing up the rear. In fact, the Lotter clan immediately managed to put their stamp on the evening’s proceedings when Mr. Lotter senior muscled a rather surprised Robert, who had turned to fetch a beer, out from behind the coals, taking over the Tong Master mantle in the process.

With a horrifying mix of Smokie and Afrikaanse Treffers blaring in the background, people quickly turned to drink and loud conversation so as to drown out the deafening din, while Retha’s newly crowned man, Miguel, entertained himself by acting as official event photographer.

Chantelle had indeed come up with some ingenious gifts for the birthday pair, the one of which was complaining that she is getting too old (as if 25 is old!) and the other complaining that he wants a boat – despite the fact that he doesn’t even have a swimming pool in which to keep it! So instead, we got Retha a box jam-packed to the brim with an assortment of colourful sweets, guaranteed to make her feel young again (we even attached all the red skittles to the side in a separate envelope after developing remorse for stealing them in the first place) while for Monty we got a diecast scale model Harley-Davidson motorbike complete with sidecar, just so that he can develop a small taste for the mid-life crisis that is surely yet to come.

The supper itself turned out absolutely divine, with all six chickens coming out to sheer mouth-watering perfection and the selection of lamb chops that Retha’s father had brought with from his small-holding out in Niewoudville (?) near Calvinia proving to be without equal. Of course there was a selection of salads and pot brood to choose from, but with the majority of people coming off the Platteland, these remained mostly untouched because you need to remember that to these guys, chicken IS salad.

The main food (and drink) all devoured, the champagne toast out of the way, next up was the big birthday cake, specially handcrafted by Chantelle for the event, complete with names and birthday wishes engraved on the top, two tone icing decorations (I didn’t even know a person could do that!) and some funky candles depicting the two respective ages as the cherry on top.

Thankfully for the two birthday bashers, our use of ‘number candles’ instead of the actual number of candles proved a godsend as the four candles were easily puffed out without half of the cake being blown away or spat on in the process.

And so the evening continued, until Retha suddenly got the urge to go out dancing (sokkie style of course) and with that, the entire contingent of young people upped and left, and the old people decided that this was as good a cue as any to get out before we asked them to stay and help with the cleanup operation.

Chantelle and I had declined to join the Klipwerf dancing group on account that Chantelle was pretty damn tired and I’m once again sick with a nasty cough and a sore foot to boot, a mistake in hindsight when we realized that Cheryl is one of those people adamant on cleaning up the same night instead of just leaving it until the next morning.

I’m seriously going to have to convince Monty to invest in a dishwashing machine – and no, not a manual one! :)

Thankfully though, some of the ladies had in fact already helped with the clearing up and after a quick spit and polish, most of the stuff was done and everyone, satisfied with a great evening’s celebrations, finally hit the sack for a well deserved snooze.

(Although I promptly woke everyone up the following morning by accidentally tripping the house alarm when I accidentally walked into an armed zone in order to set up my laptop to type out this very blog post you see before you right now. At least now, Monty can rest assured that his alarm system does in fact work.)

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.