Olympian Effort

We had a great night Saturday. A close friend was turning sixty and you know what baby boomers are like when they get down to party. And so yes, there was much Sancerre, some (very) old moves on the dance floor and okay I’ll admit it, a fair bit of Karaoke. I have a vague recollection of a swimming pool figuring somewhere in the festivities too.

As we were leaving, feeling it my sole responsibility to ensure that the Summer of Love lived on, I extended an invitation to about a dozen people (rough approximation) to come over to our house the next day to watch the closing ceremony of the Olympics.

We arrived home (by taxi of course) to a flooded kitchen and after much drunken mopping, turned the water off at the mains and fell into bed at around 2am. So I blame dehydration for the fuzzy feeling in my head early Sunday morning when I dragged into the kitchen on about four hours sleep and my husband asked what time people were coming over that afternoon.

‘What? People? But we don’t have a screening room.’ I thought.

Also I looked like I deserved to look.

‘This is not good’ I thought,’ but I hate to let people down.

Preparing to entertain while a plumber lies horizontally on your kitchen floor surrounded by the contents of your sink cupboard provides something of a challenge, as does moving at speed, in a hundred degrees of heat to pick up the phone calls from people wanting your address.

‘My prowess as a hostess is legendary.’ I think. ‘They will be expecting British flags on the gateposts, replica gold medals on ribbons, field and track games… oh! yes and food and drink.’

It dawned on me very slowly that we didn’t have any of the above or for that matter running hot water or clean towels. At the time also I didn’t know that our cable TV wasn’t working.

And so it came to pass that contravening all fire regulations, we squashed into my husband’s home office. Sitting cross-legged on the floor and flopping onto cushions we watched the extravaganza on his wide-screen Mac. We sang along with Eric Idol. We who  ‘Always Look On the Bright Side of Life.’  We drank copious amounts of wine out of plastic cups and thrashed the air to ‘Talking About My Generation.’

I swelled with pride for a country I left eleven years ago. We ate cold leftover chicken from Saturday’s party and ended the evening pretty much where we left off twenty-four hours before; in the pool, a happy band of grown-up hippies remembering that ‘All You Need Is Love.’ Oh! And yes wine and music. That too.

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