FESTIVAL OF LISA
For some time now, my daughter, Lisa, had been planning a south west birthday week with nine of her closest friends. Viv and I were more than happy to host this group who she had met while living in Manly and studying overseas in Chile. Back in her younger days, we were never keen to hold 16th and 18th birthday parties, perhaps because the memories of my own 18th birthday were still vivid. My kids would often try to argue their case with comments like, “Look what you did when you were that age” and I would respond that this was exactly the issue and some things you did as a wild child should never be repeated with your own children. We also dodged the 21st because Lisa was studying and working interstate, so here we were, at her mature age of 26, ready to make up for lost party time.
This was quite a mixed group, with seven girls and two guys, from as far afield as Holland and Canada, none of them having been to WA before. By the end of the week, Viv and I made nine new friends and it was lovely to see the strong connection they all had with Lisa. We have named one of our rural sheds the ‘spill the guts shed’, which is a place to reveal a little about yourself over a few drinks, if you feel inclined. This group were keen to ‘spill’ about Lisa, so we heard about her attempt at a Chile tinder date, problem being she could not speak Spanish. So Lisa had to bring along a girlfriend who, after so much translating, basically became the date as Lisa just sat there smiling all night. Of course there were other stories too, but all cannot be revealed.
Over the seven days they visited Bremer Bay, Albany, Rottnest Island and then, while staying with us, went on a winery tour including our favourite, Victory Point, lunched at the Colonial Brewery, checked out Margaret River mainbreak going off, swam at Redgate Beach and Gnarabup, snacked at the White Elephant and I even managed to take them all out for a little boat trip from Gracetown to catch some herring. The plan was for each person to catch at least one fish, even though some had never fished before. Lisa’s flatmate, Nic admitted that he was a particularly bad fisho and so we bet my house that I could get him onto a fish. Fortunately we were successful and then enjoyed frying them up later that night. One of the afternoon highlights was the games afternoon. Players must dress up for these games, which include lawn tennis ( tiny court ), boche, coits, basketball shooting and finished with a new, difficult game, ring on a hook ( look it up on Youtube ). The teams competed in the right spirit, but the final result rested on the ring on hook game. After 100 attempts, no-one was successful, the pressure was building, but once someone finally ‘hooked up’ there was pandemonium, singing, dancing and high fives all round ( pictured ). The evening meal consisted of abalone entrée, herring fillets, dhufish nuggets, venison and finished with chocolate mudcake. Viv and I snuck off at midnight, while the stayers walked to a coastal lookout in the early hours and then when we awoke they had even cleaned up most of their mess. Legends!