Sunday 20th January 2013
With Cath's birthday fast approaching we had both eyes on the weather. The forecast snow fall looked as if the Met Office had got it right for once and with folk coming from several directions we began to worry about people either trying too hard to get here and getting stuck in the bad conditions, or if we'd have only a couple of them join us in Mumtaz on Saturday.
Paul and Jacqui set off from Bristol on Friday morning in very poor conditions. It took them about an hour just to get around the Ring Road, but once they reached the motorway it wasn't too bad and the going was at least smooth.
Brother Nick and family weren't due to set off until Saturday, but with the snow continuing and son Zack stuck in London they decided not to chance it. Brenda, coming from the Newcastle area and suffering from hip problems also decided that common sense should prevail.
Terri and Carl had already cried off, but we still hoped for Gail and Derek to make it from Barnsley. After a phone call to check conditions they too thought it wouldn't be a good idea to chance it.
So, from and initial party of 15 we were down to 8, plus of course Daniel.
Saturday morning Paul and Jacqui took us to Harrogate where there is a Lakeland shop. Cath had wanted a Remoska for some time now. The hope was that we would be able to roast things like chicken using a lot less power than our combi oven, which requires the engine running. After a bit of a clear out of the cupboards we decided we could find room for one, so off we went full of expectation. However, when she finally got her hands on the item it turned out to be a bit smaller than hoped. Even the large size one looks too shallow to take a chicken without cutting it up, so we reluctantly decided not get one.
Finally Saturday evening rolled around and the guests started to gather, I was even persuaded to wear a tie for the occasion and Cath wore a lovely pendent which Jacqui got her.
The meal was up to the usual Mumtaz standard and everyone agreed that the food was superb. Unfortunately it was getting a bit late for Daniel, and Liz finally had to abandon us to take him home because he was just too tired. After the meal Mumtaz added a sparkling firework to the cake and brought it out while the pianist played happy birthday. They also presented her with a small gift box of their sweet meats.
We then retired to our boat to open the sparkling wine kindly provided by Liz and Damon.