Saturday, July 30, 2016

Call me the Mad Hatter

Whichever club I spinned in, Ron was always supportive (@ Duddels in HKG)

"Hey Ron, great to see you " I say to one of my oldest and best friends as I fling my arms around him for a big hug.  "I gotta go to the loo" I add hastily, "Huh?" he says.  "I gotta go to the!.., I was waiting till you came out of the gates as I didn't want to miss your arrival! "  We were at the air port, I had come to pick him up.. with a full bladder.. of course.  I had invited him to attend my eldest son's wedding, who else would be my right hand man.  I mean  I've known him from when I was 19, Ron was my best man at my wedding, he was the first to know when I was pregnant, who was my roomie when things got tough, and my rock who whisked the kids and myself away for a month when my husband died and is certainly considered a family member. (I won't tell you all terrible things I did to him that included nail polish and toothpicks....)

We catch up in the car on the drive back from the airport,  it's been 3 years since we've seen each other, so much to say, in one hour.  Of course I intersperse my sentences with colourful adjectives to the drivers who are cutting me up on the high way, he cracks up and says " Daphne, you have to chill out", huh  that's rich coming from Mr potty mouth number one when "HE" drives in Hong Kong or Thailand.!

Our last vaccy in Phuket with Sue whom he introduced to me when I lived in BKK 

My youngest son Ayden is at home, waiting eagerly for Ron, they have a bro/dude relationship, which is good, they can commence with the secret "guy talk" as I have to then jet off to sort out yet another chore before the wedding.  When I get home, my daughter eventually arrives from school, gives Ron hugs and a load of sass (while he chuckles, amused as his little Lani is now all gown up) ... what can I say, she's 17 and is flexing her muscles.  It proves to be a hilarious evening, Ayden who's got a whole head full of light brown tight curly hair has had it cut for the wedding , I looked at him  and said to Ron  " Bobby Brown, ain't no body humpin around, he's got a flat top!"  .. which triggers off a youtube playback of our old songs!  Everything came out from  mc hammer, sugarhill gang, George clinton, bobby brown's my perogative, cameo to  Whitney Huston , the kids gave up somewhere around SNAP when Ron and I were singing loudly to "I got the Power" !  

We had two more days to D day, dresses had arrived (yes yes, I buy my dresses online nowadays, no time or inclination to swim around the mall with thousands of folk) but the kids needed dress shoes. Ok for the average Malaysian it's not a problem, but I have a 16 year old kid who was hitting 6F 1 with size 11 feet and a daughter who also had problems getting shoes her size.   Thankfully we managed to find some decent shoes and shirts within the allotted time (hey we were on a tight schedule) , then it was dash straight to Lisa's house who had to exchange some stuff with me for the wedding trays called "Dulang", that she had created, then back home.   I was already exhausted, but I am woman,  so I rolled on.

The "Dulang" that included the traditional gift of "tepak sireh" arranged by )

The Wedding Reception Day arrives, and pandemonium breaks out,  Ron and I pick up the 350 jars of pickled ginger I made for my sons door gifts  from my sister in law's house, who had been kind enough to help me make them and also to keep them refrigerated ( had no more space in mine!).  We then zoomed to pick up the stressed out groom, then straight to the wedding venue to pass them the door gifts and also double check seating arrangements.

 I told Ron it was time for tea once we were done, he looked at me like I was mad, he said " we'll be going to the wedding in a few hours"  I said " believe me, by the time they start the dinner you'll be fainting of hunger, eat now, live later."  Once every one had eaten, I jetted off to the beauty centre, just my luck all the hairdressers were busy, at least my nails were done, then back home to turn on the curling iron whilst I got ready, err excuse me, whilst the ENTIRE family got ready, shouts of "have you got any perfume I can borrow", "mooommmmmmm where is my tie",  "Moooommm are you done yet?", "does this go with the dress?". "where is my speech??" .. and in between the crazy there are texts and calls coming in from everyone.  An asinine text has me hitting the roof,  Ron starts  bundling me into the car before I have a full blown 'daphasode'! "comon Daphne, it's go time, SMILE SMILE SMILE "


I must say it was a surreal moment seeing my son and his bride enter the venue, watching them as a unit go around and talk to guests.  My lovely daughter took over the baton and did a speech, it was succinct, to the point and full of love.  My brothers and their wives rallied around me, "well he's now hers Daph, ...wait till you become a grandma" ..(luckily they were holding me because for some strange reason I was choking )

My Son Christopher and his bride Irena

I look at my son,  flashes of memories, Chris as a baby, his happy little face when he used to wake up, first time he took a french fry from me and sucked on it as he had no teeth,  the first time he laid his head on my chest and stared into my eyes, the little Halloween costumes I sewed for him, his teenage mutant ninja turtle collection, his love for lego, his drawings, his singing, begging me to go see Linkin Park, playing spaceman in the school play to the sounds of David Bowie's Major Tom,  skateboarding with his buddies, his first girlfriend, his first heartbreak, leaving for the UK and now getting married.   The circle of life.  Powerful stuff.

I'm driving Ron back to the airport, this time he's using adjectives  which may I say are a RAINBOW in colour compared to mine, at the drivers that are all over the road, I laugh and say "now you understand!".    As the saying goes, you can't choose your relatives but you can certainly choose your friends, and I'm blessed to be surrounded with so many who love and support me.   Cheers to the bride and groom and their blessed future together.