A Tale of two themed Parties
Two 50th birthday Parties
Two parties that stand out in my life were both fiftieth birthday parties.
The first one in !997 was mine. This was a difficult ime in my life. My son had recently been killed in a car wreck and a sparse few month’s later my 50th was coming up.
It was winter. It was cold. The landscape was bleak and life was not really a joy at that time. My ex wanted to give me a landmark 50th birthday party. The last thing in life I wanted was a 50th birthday party.
Events of 1997
- Toni Braxton's "Unbreak My Heart" was the number one music item at that time
- David Bowie was also celebrating his 50th birthday in that year.
- The spice girls are making it big and I think this is a great group for my youngest daughter to enjoy.
- Bill Clinton starts his second term as President of the United States. Scientists announce to the world that a sheep named Dolly has been successfully cloned.
- John Denver is killed Nasa has many space shuttle launches throughout the year including one to fix the hubble space telescope.
- Also Diana Princess of Wales is killed in a car accident in the same year.
- It was the year of my 50th birthday
The First Party - Barbeque or Garden Party
My ex decided that she should invite 50 people to the party to mark the event. She decided that a pig and a lamb on the spit should be the highlight of the day’s fare. She kept all of this from me as I had said I did not want a bash. So it was a “surprise Party”.
On the day, the caterers pitched up and setup the spit braai’s (barbeques) and I could not stop the event. The guests included family and even old fiends from both school and my rugby playing days. How she managed to find these people and contact them was and still is a complete mystery to me.
The event was fairly low key despite the 50 guests and was a muted event never quite reaching the heights of a great party. On reflection I think that party and the arrangements were more as something to keep her busy than to really give me a party. But so be it.
The Second Party
Fast forward a bit. The events that would lead to a divorce after 34 years were in play and we had bought and moved to a farm in Mphumalanga. I was commuting to Johannesburg to work in Johannesburg.
Events of 2001
2001 was the year Lady Marmalade" by Christina Aguilera was the top tune.
Douglas Adams author of “Café at the end of the universe” and “So long thanks for the fish” dies
9/11 happened and we see it live on Television.
My ex was turning 50.
The Formal Party
I planned a surprise party for her. The entire village was in on the secret and we planned a sit down supper, music and a dance in the local hotel. 50 invited guests and my children came from out to town to be there.
I thought we had a great party. Life was wonderful. Who knew that a few short months later she would leave me.
So that is the contrasting tale of two fiftieth birthday parties seen through the unseeing eyes of yours truly.