Burn’s Night! Black tie and wallpaper paste.

Oh dear God. So there I was, it was 5pm and I had almost finished a very challenging day of wallpapering when my phone rang. “Hi, tonight’s do, turns out it’s going to be black tie and we’re picking you up at 6.30. Sorry. See you in a bit. Bye.”  So now I had 90 minutes to finish the walls, wash and find a suitable outfit. Right now I know what you’re thinking, if you’re a lady you’re wondering if I had my party frocks back from the dry cleaners, how was I going to style my hair with wallpaper paste in it and that 90 minutes was going to be cutting it fine. If you’re a gentleman you’re wondering if I hung the paper with a plumb line.  Gentlemen, I will address your concerns in a minute but more important things were afoot.  Even if my frocks were back from the imaginary cleaners (oh how I would love to have that many dresses) they still wouldn’t fit after a wonderfully indulgent Christmas.

Panicking, I finished the walls (a wee bit slap dash) ran for the bathroom and then attacked my wardrobe.  The joy of having no clothes is that it doesn’t take you long to realise that you truly have nothing to wear. Finally, I went for a full length skirt in brown silk and a matching top. Top was a wraparound and skirt had a drawstring waist; gentleman you may be all at sea with these descriptions but the ladies will appreciate the expandable natures of these garment.  I wasn’t hugely confident of the outfit though because the last time I wore it Steve said I looked like a Tudor milkmaid. And not the Benny Hill sort but the pestilence and poverty sort.  Hey ho.  I had just enough time to get a face on, look at the wallpaper, wince a bit at some of the edgings , kiss Steve and children goodnight before my ride whisked me away to a Burns Night party held at Pentewan Sands.
I relaxed back into the car thinking all my problems were solved when one of the girls in the car asked “Do you reel?” Seemed a bit of a personal question and quite frankly I only start reeling after the third bottle’s been open and I wasn’t going to tell her that but then the horror dawned on me, she meant highland dancing, that sort of reel.  Maybe my choice of 3 inch heels was not such a good wardrobe call after all.
I’ve got to say though I had a fabulous time, my friend’s husband hates dancing whilst she is fabulous at it so we spent lot of time dashing off to the loos or bar at the start of each dance.  He was clearly more practiced at avoidance than I was as I kept being encouraged to join in. Impressively, the men on our table were exceptional dancers and I have never spent an evening apologising so much.  I can dance, but I don’t quite get left, right and clockwise so once I’ve learnt a thing I’m fine but for the first few movements of every piece I was joining wrong sets, going backwards when I should have gone forward and stripping the willow with the wrong partner, I have to say it was a far more sedate Strip the Willow than I remember.  At school it seemed to be a contest to see who could swing the girls the furthest or make them fall over or show their knickers.  And on the subject of knicker showing, some of the gentlemen last night needed to wear their sporrans a bit lower. We didn’t know where to look when those kilts started flying!
All in all I met a lovely group of people, made a fool of myself in public, ate great food, I do like haggis and raised many a happy dram to the man himself.  As for the wallpaper, well I’m tidying that up today.

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