1. Decide to have BBQ on the day that weather forecasters tell the UK that it is due clouds, light rain turning heavier in the afternoon. AND YET STILL ignore wife’s insistence that sometimes weather forecasters CAN get it right.
2. Continue to steadfastly believe that weather forecasters are a bunch of idiots because they forgot to forewarn the hurricane about 5 years ago (so, just Michael Fish then, really) and actually go out and BUY a barbeque from Wickes because although you already built one at the one at the end of the garden last year, you’ve decided at the eleventh hour it might be too close to the weeping apple tree* and could cause it undue distress**.
3. Begin to believe No.2 might be stretching belief slightly when wet stuff appears from sky at 1.30pm. Barbeque is due to start at 2.30pm. Start to huff a lot, swear under breath and shake fist at sky. That’ll help.
4. Find roll of plastic in garage and drill… yes DRILL lengths of it to top of car-port and adjacent wall to prevent wind sending rain sheeting over said Barbeque, ensuring Wife has plenty to do holding the length of “four-be-two” whilst drills/six inch screws are located and drilled noisily into (probably) neighbour’s wall.
5. After having arranged two full-sized doors as tables, decide as wife won’t allow impromptu (but “essential”) purchase of outdoor heaters, to start a fire in two of her favourite metal plant containers that she had plans to pot trailing cherry tomatoes/basil in outside the back door. That’ll teach her.
6. Put wife’s screech (yes, SCREECH!) of “Oh My F*cking Good God What Do You Think You’re DOING!?” down to pre- Barbeque nerves. Repeat ‘it’ll all be fine, it’ll all be fine” until you actually start believing yourself and ignore anyone else who doesn’t.
7. Find thickest pair of sunglasses you can find as smog from both metal plant containers (turned-patio-heaters *snort*) send billows of thick black smoke through garden, neighbouring gardens and house (even with windows shut) ensuring all smoke alarms go off (but not at the same time, resulting in as much cacophony as possible) and men rush about with long-handled implements trying to stop the incessant din.
8. Thank god the neighbours are out. It IS a UK Bank Holiday Monday after all, they’re probably at the nearest beach enjoying a good old British soaking.
9. Finish the bottle of wine.
* Call me old-fashioned but when a wife mentions she’s always fancied having a Weeping Willow tree in the back garden, she does NOT expect her husband to tie bricks (seriously, keep reading) to every branch of the apple tree by lengths of string in order to “train” said tree to grow its branches in a downwards fashion.
** This wife happens to consider it tree abuse.
The moral of this story is: NEVER accept an invitation to a BBQ at our house unless you bring so much alcohol it can guarantee drowning out the sound of angry optimism. (And Angry Italian Optimism is NOT PRETTY).
No photos will follow – just use your imagination!