We have never seen so many parked cars (except on the M25) or so many people.
One word had attracted them all.
This is indeed our favourite word, but in a way it’s a shame that events such as we attended last night aren’t usually so well supported if there is a fee.
The marquees were erected earlier in the week, and talking to the site manager on Friday, there would be around 150 guests for the annual Wine and Canopes on the Lawn the following evening.
Hubby and I decided that we would be foolish to go anywhere in the car yesterday as by the time we got back, we’d have nowhere to park. In fact, coming back from a walk in the afternoon, cars were everywhere and being diverted to the lawn areas close to the river. One rather long vehicle wanted to be a little closer and decided to park on the bank along the single track tarmac accessing the marina. His back wheels had just inches to spare before disappearing over the top. Rather him than me.
Kick off was 7pm, but the two and a half of us didn’t arrive until 7.30.
The entertainment was a guy on a keyboard with a pleasant voice and large versatile repertoire, who kept the volume such that you could hear him, but also hold a conversation with other people.
We asked to share a table with a couple we knew by sight, though after half an hour, they moved on to mingle with other friends. Meanwhile, people we knew joined us.
It was an extremely pleasant evening. The weather had stayed dry though there was a slight chill in the air so I came back to the boat to get our jumpers.
I’ve never had canopes before, and to be honest didn’t really know what to expect other than little tartie things or crackers with pate on them. I was anxious though in case there was nothing but anchovies type nibbles which would mean we’d probably be down the chip shop later!
I got us a drink (Hubby cranberry juice and myself lemonade with a dash of white wine), and we had waitress service for the evening, each explaining what was on their tray; cheesie muffins, salmon crackers, beef and yorkshire pudding (with horseradish), sausage rolls, swirls of bread with cream cheese and hazlenuts, goat’s cheese and tomato pastries, herb and garlic biscuits, stilton cheese straws, prawn tarts, in fact something for everyone and a very wide choice, all freshly made in a mobile kitchen so a lot of the food was hot and there was plenty of it.
Everything was bite size, and we were encouraged (not difficult) to take two at a time.
Maggie was very good until she got a whiff of the sausage rolls and wearing her pathetic ‘they don’t feed me’ look, started following the waitresses round. We called her back and she settled under the table, but one lass took pity on her and (of course) I didn’t see the two sausage rolls ‘fall’ off the platter in her vicinity. Maggie has the knack of looking innocent when the evidence, in this case puff pastry, is stuck to her chin.
There was plenty of wine and soft drinks available in the marquee, again served by staff, and it was a lovely relaxed atmosphere. I was surprised at the number of people I recognised, and even more so by the number who knew me by name! I even had a cuddle from one guy from the other basin (he’s in his 70s and an absolute sweetheart).
We’d missed the event last year as we didn’t arrive here until the following week.
The Marina hold three social events during the season, the first being a barbecue and at the end a Hog Roast, both of which attract a charge.
Talking to people today, they all said they had enjoyed it and that it was one of the best.
Most comments were on the music though which was different this year and apparently easier on the ear. Hopefully the young man will be invited back again.