On the menu was:
- Veggie kebabs (mushroom, onion, zucchini, capsicum)
- BBQ and satay chicken kebabs
- BBQ chicken wings
- Gourmet burger patties
- Chicken and pasta salad
- Garden salad
- Tomato and chorizo salad
- Chocolate mud cake for dessert
I love Coles/Woolworths pre-washed and packaged salad leaves. Such time savers and as long as they're fresh, they look great. I especially love the coleslaw mix... crunchy and delicious, and it would take ages to grate all of the cabbage into different sizes.
The first disaster involved lighting the BBQ. It hadn't been used in a while and the men were having difficulty. "It shouldn't smell this strongly like gas", I observed. This was met with chortles and phrases like "It always smells like gas, this is a gas BBQ", "I have lit over 100 BBQs in my life, can you just relax?" and "I think I can light a BBQ, it isn't rocket science".
What followed was a loud bang, one person getting their hair and eyebrows singed (thank goodness he wasn't hurt) and a fire somehow started behind the BBQ, under the patio. A quick thinking guest poured a jug of water over it, and thankfully we didn't burn the whole house down. I hope our landlord has good insurance, we are evidently dangerous tenants.
The men proceeded to burn all of the meat, and the onions were so charcoaled that they had to be binned. It still (mostly) tasted good, except the burger patties which we called "meat biscuits", they were that hard. Their excuse was that it was too dark and they couldn't see. I think they just had no idea what they were doing.
The second incident involved possums. We live in a leafy suburb and the possums share it in the hundreds. They wake us up at night with their scratching and banging in the ceiling, and I have had a bubble bath ruined when I could hear them mating right above me (in case you haven't heard this before, there is a lot of grunting and what sounds like a cat being strangled).
I may look cute, but I am the Aussie equivalent of a raccoon (although less viscous when provoked - I'm more likely to pee everywhere and run away, ripping everything in my path to shreds with my long claws)
Two possums decided to visit the BBQ, run around the outside of the table sending guests scattering and screaming, and then climb up onto the patio and sit perched as if they were about to jump onto the table. It was getting cold anyway so we removed all traces of food and relocated inside.
At midnight when the guests left, the possums were still in the same spot:
It was a nice night, although I don't think I had any time to sit down and chat to anyone - I was always running around getting food ready, making sure people had enough wine or clearing up plates. Being the host is tiring stuff, I much prefer being a dinner guest!