Last Friday I turned fifty.
The previous night, I had attended Thursday Night Curry, starting in the Fork & Brewer with adrexia
, Joel, Jacob, & Martin. seraphs_folly
joined us at Dawaat, along with others regular TNC-ers.
I'd taken my birth day off of work, after seraphs_folly
expressed surprise that I hadn't already arranged to. I had intended just to go to work as normal and head into the party after work. Had I done so, I might have gotten to the party on time! As it was I slept in at seraphs_folly
When she awoke I was presented with a marvelous gift, two beautiful limited edition resin Studio McVey
miniatures that had had been masterfully painted by Rachel (of Iron Halo
. The first is "ar Fiach" a modern/steampunk fantasy avian elf creature with a musket perched on a brick chimney, sculpted by Yannik Hennebo, and the second is a lovely rendition of "Pan" sculpted by Jaques-Alexandre Gillois.
Yes, those are tiny naked green fairies in the Pan picture, and while ar Fiach is wearing a fancy jacket (probably stolen from a washing line somewhere) she sure ain't wearing a shirt!
I think you'll all agree Rachel has definitely done these sculpts justice. She went town on adding fairy forest detail to the "Pan" base, and added an entire roof to "ar Fiach", as you''ll see if you go and look at the originals on the Studio McVey site (I can't provide a direct link because they have a silly Flash-based site). I spent some time examining the detail on these miniatures in sunlight. I would have loved to show them off to people at the party, but I was afraid of potential damage. Not that anyone would do so intentionally, of course, but they are resin and very fragile. Anyway, you really need sunlight, or really good artificial light, and a very close look to see the detail, so photos are probably more useful to get the full effect.
Following that lovely start to the day, we toddled down to Caffiend's in Petone for a late brunch, where I made my first mistake of the day, leaving my Samsung Galaxy SII sitting on the table when we left. Of course I didn't realize this until somewhat later.
After returning from Petone, my lady retired for further rest and I proceeded to play Borderlands on my Envy17, as I had recently purchase the PC version complete with all downloadable content for the minimal fee of $7.49 during Steam's Halloween sale.
It was then that I made my second mistake, of not keeping a proper eye on the passing time, and suddenly realized I should have been at the Fork & Brewer five minutes ago. It was also at this stage that I realized I no longer had my cell phone, as it is my primary timing mechanism. Then had to wait while my lady got up, as I was also supposed to have woken her with time to get up, so in the end I didn't get to the bar until almost ten to six. Sorry to keep people waiting!
Despite the late start, Part One was good, with people from mutilple "families" turning up. Certain people were being naughty in the corner of the booth, not that I minded, but as a result certain ladies might be interested in the picture that wyldcard
pxted to me... Moving on, I received a number of presents, including a dice bag complete with dice flogger, a book on bootleg whisky during WWII, and some white curacao from my D&D dungeon-mistress.
The Fork & Brewer's beer selection was good and I discovered a couple of new brews that I will drink again, though I stuck mainly with the good old Emerson's Bookbinder.
I would have stayed longer in the bar, but some people wanted actual food ( I don't know why, it just soaks up the alcohol quicker!), so we cruised off to a Korean place Sophie knew which was too small/full, and ended up instead at a nearby Vietnamese place.
Got back home not too late and fell asleep.
Saturday morning I got up early, as I'd gone to sleep pretty early for me, and then played Borderlands again until seraphs_folly
woke up, when I got showered & dressed and headed down to Caffiends and luckily recovered my Galaxy, did some shopping on the way back, and then waited until it was time to go to Yum Cha at Dragons with the family.
My mother and sisters came down from Levin, the first time I'd seen them in quite some time, Ele & Ben came over also, but the big surprise was ferrouswheel
turning up with tatnja
, all the way from Hong Kong! Thanks for that Joel, it was a nice surprise, and I'm sure others appreciated seeing you too! :) seraphs_folly
tells me Ben tried all of the strange foods, and thomasdequinc
seemed to get on well with Ben also. The food was good (I <3 coconut buns), but I had to sneak into Joe's Garage afterwards for some real coffee.
Then it was back to Harbourview for more Borderlands before needing to prepare for Part Two. Yes I know I should have been playing SkyRim, but that would have involved taking my PS3 round too, and anyway seraphs_folly
's TV isn't big enough. *grin*. I have actually shown great restraint in not playing SkyRim over the last few days. I think it's wearing thin though, maybe I'll give in tonight.
I put out all the snacks with assistance from others at the the flat, and the first selection of drinks, and then got a bit flustered as the first people were arriving as I had discovered the secondary hard-drive on my lap top, where the play list I had set up was stored, seemed to have failed. Anyone happen to have a spare 1TB laptop drive anywhere? Hopefully I haven't lost too much in that crash, as the first sign of the drive going was the back-up failing, and I thought it was the the back-up drive and it's drivers that was the problem initially, so I don't have a recent back-up of the drive.
Luckily all the actual music was on the main drive, and wyldcard
expressed his love for 80's music, volunteering to be the de-facto DJ for the night, so we managed to work around the hardware issue.
More people arrived, and I got other presents including new music from panda_pitt
booze of various varieties, including a nice looking Laphroiag, and books. tyellas
insisted on feeding me a chocolate-coated strawberry, not that I needed much convincing.
I'm not sure what time I ended up getting into the spa, but it was after the first round of savouries, and there were a lot of other people already there when I got in. Obviously, one does not talk about the spa, but I feel it's OK to talk about a few fun things around the periphery, such as how evie_fae
's choice of Bruichladdich Rocks as a gift went down really well. Coming after the strong peatiness of the 16 yr-old Lagavulin (trust adrexia to go straight for the good stuff when sent out for another bottle!), it's easy to see why this spa event was particularly memorable.
The one draw-back of the spa is that there were people that I'd intended to talk to, that I never really got the chance to, and even some gifts that were left for me that I didn't get to thank people for in person. I know pombagira left me some witchy bath salts, so thanks for those, Polly! Apologies to anyone else I didn't manage to spend time with, and thanks for coming!I don't even know if any fire-spinning occurred out front, as had been rumoured to occur.
Once the spa party finished up (not sure when that happened, someone may be able to let me know) I found myself involved in a long session of interpretive dance with adrexia to the soundtrack of Bob Dylan's "Blood On the Tracks" (primarily). I'm sure we must have been amusing to those socializing in the kitchen, but it was a lot of fun, even if I am not the most co-ordinated of dancers, and the one or two lifts I attempted were abortive, despite adrexia's co-operation. I hope we didn't scare the hare too much. The dancing was eventually ended, I believe, by car pool people needing to leave, and I do not know if I said good-bye to all the people remaining, I was, after all, somewhat drunk.
After everyone left, I found myself lying in bed with seraphs_folly listening to songs on my Galaxy SII (Tori's Bells for Her seemed appropriately beautiful to my mood) whilst exchanging tweets and Facebook entries with other party-goers who had also not yet gone to sleep.
On waking in the morning I found my legs very weak and wobbly. I blame the combination of several hours soaking in hot water, followed by the interpretative dance. Overall though, I felt pretty good. My commiserations to those who did not, and/or who had to get up & go to work.
My lady & I got up relatively early, to head into town to pick up her latest cat from the airport, which had been kindly brought up from Christchurch by argentbear, whom it was good to catch up with during the car ride, and then did some party clean-up.
After I got back to Wolf Castle I found a large pile of parcels had arrived while I'd been away, including a large order of RAFM miniatures that had been spending several months making it's way toward me across the sea, so before crashing I unpacked and processed some of that stuff. My lounge really looks like I've only just moved in now. So many figures, so little time.
To sum up though, I have fun memories from a great weekend into which many people put effort to make it lovely and memorable. Thanks to all, though especially thanks to seraphs_folly for hosting us and transporting me when I was drunk, and arranging beautiful gifts, and being accepting of me sharing significant & meaningful times with others. Thanks to those others, and to all, for your hugs, kisses, gifts of song and joy, your presence, your assistance when needed, your energy, and your love.
I am now fifty, but I've had a spring in my step on the way to work this week, and am not at all feeling old, because of you all. <3
I'll leave you with a song from the party play-list that is one of my favourites, from Simple Minds, the title of which I think sums up my attitude at present : Alive & Kicking
You turn me on, you lift me up
And like the sweetest cup I'd share with you
You lift me up, don't you ever stop, I'm here with you