This time, a private party in Norfolk. The hosts had seen us playing at one of the Rougham Air Field Events (hidden inside a tent that you couldn't lift the sides of, so most people peeked through and saw our fee!). Were we free to do a private birthday party? Well, the price was right so we said yes.
Now, on a lovely August day you'd expect a garden party to go well. But, being UK August, the height of summer, it peed down! Torrential rain! Half the guests cancelled and the lovely laid out lawn with small marquees etc was a muddly swamp with the strong wind sending the B&Q special marquees flying.
So, we were moved indoors (as we couldn't play outside in the summer house as originally intended. By they way, their summerhouse would have done as a complete annexe to our house!).
Inside was lovely - beams, antiques, and low ceilings. Great if you play stand up bass! We were squished into one beamed area of the converted cottages (three into one). In front of us were vertical beams too so we were sectioned off, like in a mini-prison. B kept hitting his head on the lamp, and every time M hit any kind of drum all the bone china on the Welsh Dresser next to us rattled and threatened to slip. On one side was a small open fronted display cabinet full of antique perfume bottles. We suggested the owner push them slightly to the back of each shelf and she immediately knocked one off - but I caught it! Phew!
We played and they enjoyed our music, but they all had face paint on (grown ups, not children) and it looked really strange. Then there was the 'farting song' - delivered by the birthday boy's son and granddaughter. And a four-year-old's improvised pirate song (clever little tyke!).
The rain stopped so they went into the garden for - this is true! - wheelchair egg and spoon racing. The birthday boy himself (a young 60) showed me his workshop which was full of model airplanes. Not little ones, hulking great five-six-eight foot things that had motors and flew and everything. He had about 30 in the workshop and a further 90 (I was told) in a barn.
We had good food, they treated us well, and enjoyed the music. But I don't think private parties are really our forte somehow. The money came in handy though, especially as it was the day after our holiday so cash was very welcome.
So - what next? Well, the next gig is the Red Lion Folk Day, and I'm doing that with someone completely different. Let's see what happens....