5.1.04

And a good time was had by all

Just back from the wedding dinner. It turned out that my new dress happened to be the exact colours of the wedding party, and I don't know if T dressed to match me or because he figures with a black suit he'd best wear a bright-coloured shirt like a RED one, but the short of it is that we managed to inadvertently look we belonged the wedding party without having consciously dressed to match them.

There were a lot of people in fiery red dresses too: my mom, Sprite, and a couple of other women. Wait till the pictures come out.

For Sterrah's benefit, this was the dinner menu (as I remember it, not the official and posh-sounding descriptions, which I didn't read anyway):
Appetiser: King prawn and crayfish with a little salad on the side. I'm ordinarily not a big fan of shellfish, but the prawn and crayfish tasted nothing like themselves --- i.e. they were well-cooked with whatever seasoning they were cooked in, so as to completely mask the crustaceany tastes --- so it was a good start to the evening.

Soup: Cream of pumpkin. I'm also not a fan of pumpkin usually (one slice of pumpkin pie per Thanksgiving will last me all year, thanks), but this was also quite yummy.

Entree: Cod --- crispy on the outside, soft and flaky on the inside --- with cubed potatoes in some white yum sauce and grilled vegetables on the side. Perfect --- except that I was strangely full after eating about half the fish (and it wasn't a huge serving), so I fobbed some of the potatoes and veggies off to a hungrier, younger cousin at my table.

Dessert: Here's where things did not turn out as expected. It was some orangey/apricot/citrus pudding, with some chocolate cake-like filling, and stewed apricots on the side. In principle, I had nothing against it. In taste, it was too sweet. Hardly anyone finished it (except for the aforementioned hungrier, younger cousin, who ate his share and then the half of mine I couldn't eat anymore, because my teeth and stomach were wailing in saccharine protest).
Family dinners get nicer and nicer, now that we're all old enough to be comfortable with ourselves and with each other. It also helps that there are also more female cousin-in-laws to even out the gender balance.

New Zealanders are so laidback. Must be the magical combination of cleaner, cooler air, a heavily dairy diet and an all-round lack of pretentiousness on account of the fact that New Zealand is, well, New Zealand. Most First World countries have a lot more cultural angst.

Oh, and the toast? I did a quick check with my aunt before the dinner began, and she said they just wanted a simple one-liner, followed by "Cheers!" So that's what I did.

However, I did forget to ask people to rise for the toast. And to ask them to sit down after the toast. And my aunt (i.e. mother of the bride) was in the restroom when we hustled the family forward for the toast, so we had to then stand around and wait for her. So there are certainly areas for improvement (as we like to call them in civil service-speak). But overall it was far less painful than I'd feared.

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