Sunday, 13 July 2008

the party

Saturday was our neighbor girl's long awaited birthday party. Lunch was to be served at 1pm, so we had the morning to ourselves. We left the house about 10:45 and went to a boot sale (sort of flea market) near Mildenhall. It was pretty cool, windy, and drizzling. There wasn't much of a crowd there, so all things considered we left the children in the van to watch a movie, and Bob and I went browsing. I bought 6 old books for 5GBP. One is The Gorilla Hunters by R.M. Ballantyne - Vision Forum has republished a lot of his books, so I am interested to see how it is. I also got The Scarlet Pimpernel, which I've wanted to read ever since Daffy Duck made his version of the story. Then there are two books published by the London Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, and Snow-shoes and Canoes by Kingston (it just looked interesting). The sixth book has made its way off my stack, but it was something about Bible prophecies and how they've been proven in history.

So after that we headed back to Newmarket and found the parking garage and the market that we'd bumped into one day before we moved in and didn't know how to find it. But we didn't get out there because William was asleep and it was nearly time to find the party.

The party was at the grandma's house in a teeny-tiny village about 10 minutes from here. (I think it's the only house in the 'village'.) (It's already 9:30, so i better hurry!) They have a big, beautiful 'garden' with a dozen flower beds of all shapes and sizes. Bob left his camera in the car to just enjoy the day and not be intrusive. They had a bouncy castle, child-size croquet, "splat the rat," child's lawn bowling set, a mini trampoline, a sand table and molds to make castles, and a dozen push toys for the children. There were 4 tents (they call them "marquees") for hiding under when it rained.
The girl's father and grandfather were grilling sausages and burgers, and the baby brother was opening presents when we got there. It was his "naming day" as well as her birthday (a naming day is a secular sort of christening). So we went into the main tent and handed our present over, and the girl saw the children and lit up. "The fam'l' next door!" From that time on Taryn was at her beck and call. So we settled in, in time for the lunch. The sausages were very good, the burgers less so. Apparently Newmarket is famous for its sausages.
It sprinkled off and on for awhile, but finally quit. After a while the girl's other friends came for her part of the party. They ran and played for awhile, and then Bob set up the Pinata we bought, and the children lined up for that. They each got about 10 turns before it finally started to break. The bottom came off all in one piece so the candy spilled a bit but didn't go flying. The children rushed in, but each just got a handful and called it good. So a couple of them picked up the rest and put it back in the bottom part of the pinata (it was shaped like a layer cake) and handed it over to the neighbor. She said she will be sharing with our crew every time they go over to play.

Then they had her dinner and cake and presents, and we called it a day, leaving about 5:30.
Having had problems with our phones lately, we went to the home store (like Home Depot) in Newmarket and bought a new cordless phone. They are about half the price as the BX. Bob just finished using one, so I guess it works okay. So it was quite a long day, and we all slept well last night.

Bob guesses there were about 50 people at the party.
Oh, one time I was talking with Bob and a little girl (probably 4 or 5) came up and pointed right up at me and said "what's that?" I said, "Do I have something on my nose?" She said, "No, on your head." (OH, that. :-) ) "That's a covering." "oh," and ran off.
Splat the rat is a traditional game where one person drops a "rat" (in this case a sock filled with sand) down a steeply sloping PVC pipe, and another person waits at the end with a bat to try to splat it when it comes out of the pipe. Very difficult.

I guess that'll do for now, as it is bedtime.


kimba said...

I'll be interested to know what you think of the Scarlet Pimpernel. I read it some years ago and loved it. The old Leslie Howard movie is my favourite version although the Anthony Andrews version isn't bad.

Ganeida said...

Your weekend sounds like fun. It's nice when all the kiddies have such good manners.

MamaOlive said...

Kimba, I'm not convinced I'll actually get to *read* the books, I'm just excited to have them. ;-) There is always hope, though.

LC said...

I'm glad you decided to explain "Splat the Rat" so I didn't have to ask.