We were invited to a small party, nothing too fancy just a small collection of friends and in this case a friends family. One thing you can always be sure of at a party of this nature is the buffet, a selection of sandwiches, sausages on sticks, cheese and pineapple skewers, sausage rolls, crisps you get the idea, party food. I love party food, in fact I’d gatecrash any party just to raid the buffet, food when layed out on a big table and left to warm and curl a little tastes wonderful. Even more so if you have some cheesy music playing and maybe a tipple or two in your hand. You know from that point onwards its downhill and you will be bobbing about like a nutter on the makeshift dance floor a little later regretting that small slice of quiche that tasted ‘funny’.
Anyway, we arrived and as you do on these occasions sought out our hosts by way of the buffet table. My, what a table, it was probably the most gorgeous buffet table ever, anywhere. It had everything, even vol au vents and little Melba toasts with pate, we are talking Lurpak here, not a Stork SB kind of buffet this was serious party food. The little pork pies wafted their aroma towards me picking up the tang of pickled onions along the way I literally glided past the table on thin air mesmerised by the unfolding deliciousness which was already making my tummy leap with excitement.
Half an hour later we were stood, drink in hand waiting for the moment the cling film would be removed and the buffet would be officially ‘open’. Our hosts who we had only briefly managed to see spied us from across the room and came across for a bit of a catch up. We chatted and chatted and very pleasant it was too when out of the corner of my eye I saw a little hand reach up to the buffet table some feet away and remove part of the cling film to grab an egg sandwich. From that point onwards I was only half joining in as the buffet bandit struck again, this time with a handful of crisps. I wanted to shout ‘no!’ but instead just mouthed the words and ended on ‘O’ so my face looked like Paul McCartney pulling off one of his ‘Ooooo’ expressions, you know the one I mean, the one that makes you sick.
My mouth started watering, hand after hand picked away at the table I longed to pick at myself. I fidgeted, wanted to walk right over and strike the thief down, it was not buffet etiquette. A heavy distraction bought back to earth as my host turned their questioning back to me. Looking back I was in an almost dream like state, carrying on a conversation as the buffet was slowly being reduced. Then came the hammer blow. ‘The buffets open folks, help yourself!’ shouted our hosts then immediately turned back to continue questioning me.
Hundreds of hands plunged into the buffet, festoons of cheese sandwiches flew up in flurries, lavish bursts of crisp explosions filled the air. Children laughed with glee as they stuffed their faces, adults walked away from the table with sometimes two or three plates piled high whilst I was engaged in conversation struck with a sense of duty not to disrespect our hosts completely by pushing them to the floor and trampling their bodies in my haste to grab a crab paste snack.
I imagined all sorts of hideousness to the buffet bandits as the contents of the table reduced, I mentally ate the food with them when I saw particular favourites being consumed. Little groups of people stood munching away, plunging fistfuls into stuffed mouths. It was a torture like no other as I watched with mounting horror the table laid bare.
Our conversation ended. I looked at Jayne, she had the same pained expression, our host had kept us occupied the whole munching session and ended on a cheery ‘Help yourself to the buffet, we ate earlier.’
Did you now, bloody did you now! I starved myself all day so I could pig out and all I’m left with is a plastic fork, two smoky bacon crisps, a half eaten pork pie that had been kicked around the floor and a sausage with teeth marks. Disappointment, you don’t know the half of it mate, I longed for that buffet and now it had been cruelly taken away before my eyes. Honestly dear blog I didn’t know where to look, I could hardly look anyone in the eye as all I could see was what they consumed, and yes, I had memorised everybodys plates as they past me the greedy people.
Now I understand all this may sound a little rude, you only go to parties to eat food do you? Well, quite frankly yes, I don’t get out much you see. Our hosts have read this blog entry before I posted it and laughed immensely, they have even asked me to add ‘You did seem very distracted that day we thought you were constipated’. Their words not mine.
So if you are ever at a party and see me fidgeting in a corner trapped by some conversationalist pillock when the buffet is being unwrapped please, oh please come and rescue me. Treat it like a mission of mercy, I don’t think I can survive seeing another buffet disappear, I fear the shock may be too great.