Monday, December 29, 2008

Thursday 25 December 2008

Christmas Day 2008

Ali woke up before 9 am for the first time in months, and we opened presents and had Jo’s special pancakes for breakfast. Later we dinghied over to Gwendolyn and joined everyone for drinks on board for a few hours. About three, we went ashore with a few snacks and a few more cold drinks to wait for Christmas dinner to arrive, and sat around in front of the café on the log steps while the kids played with their presents, built another bonfire, and ran up and down the beach.

About 6 pm, the long tail turned up, with a very stressed out resort owner - I’ll call him Pak, a respectful Indonesian term for an older man, as we never quite got his name – and the Danish couple on board. They’d had all kinds of trouble all day long, with boats breaking down and having to unload and reload all the supplies several times. Pak was obviously expecting to be greeted by an irate, hungry mob of yachties demanding to know where their dinner was, but none of us was bothered at all. We’d had a lovely relaxed day, watching the kids play, hanging out with good people and plenty of cold beer and snacks. What’s to complain about?

Instead we helped unload the boat and carry everything into the kitchen. Shortly after that Pak and the Danes presented us with trays of something like a Pina Colada with, I suspect, some of Pak’s Mekong rum in them. And in another hour or so, we sat down to a wonderful dinner of Thai food, with plenty of stir-fried vegetables, pork, chicken and prawns. Pak had even bought a barbeque to cook the prawns on, a kind of metal bucket which he filled with coals from the kids’ bonfire.

Gwen and Caroline had brought the Christmas lights from Gwendolyn, and Stina, the Danish girl, brought out her laptop with music. In case we were short of entertainment, Lex and Jim did several renditions of "The Wayward Wind", recruiting Brad to replace Richard and Brian. We do think it’s time they enlarged their repertoire…

Stina and her husband Christian are members of the Danish group “Pink Floyd Project”, a Pink Floyd tribute band. She’s one of the three female backing singers and (if you know your PF then you’ll know how impressive this is) does that wonderful long solo. She said the Australian tribute band was considered the best in the world, and the Danes hoped to make it to number two. I’ve heard them in Darwin (the Oz band ie) and they’re brilliant. Stina and Christian were planning to stay at Pak’s place for the rest of their holiday and were giving him some pointers on attracting more tourists, without changing the ambience of the place that made them jump ship in the first place. Nice to know there are people in the world like them!

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