Party food laid out on the dining table.
And some were brave enough to go outside. The rain stopped and left us with a fairly warm evening. We had the chimenea heating up the seating area.
Our neighbours came from across the road and joined in. Also organised our guests parking on their land. As our drive only has room for 6 cars and that 6 included our family's 3.(We are on a very narrow country road, close to a junction that other drivers tear up to, screech to a halt, and then leave half their tyres behind them.)
D and R were the first people to live in our house, brought up their family, and then went on to have a ' new build' across the road. We bought the house from the couple they had sold it to, only two years ago. It was the first time that D had come back inside. She had a good look at all the 'improvements' and we both heaved a sigh of relief when she said, " It just doesn't look like my house anymore and I dont feel a thing."
It was so nice that all our friends from different areas of our lives got on so well together.
What always amazes me about this part of the country is how often people meet and find they know either each other, or have some other person they both know, for totally unexpected reasons you would never imagine. Or at the very least they soon find something they have in common. (Not just knowing Mike and I!) I found myself going round and continually saying, "No, well really, fancy that."
It brought to mind when I used to visit a then boyfriend in St Albans and could not understand or come to terms with that no-one asked questions, to me that was not being interested in me, but my then boyfriend complained at my nosiness! Up here everyone gets stuck in straight away and then its as if they have been given a comfort blanket once they have established a connection. Thats when the laughter and enjoyment really gets going.
Today the Family finally got their act together, picnic packed, and off to Alford to go on a steam train. So I am having a blissful few hours to potter around cleaning up, in total silence, apart from snoring cats and the birds singing.
Now everywhere is clean and tidy. I discovered we werent drank out of house and home. So cheers me dears.