Even on days with no competitions I’m up early. Saturday morning finds me outside Pipe Band HQ, not quite sober from last night’s exertions and trying to focus on the man who is delivering our pig. After a brief ‘how to’ he lights the gas burners, we cordon off the area and I retire to my bed to regain some equilibrium.
I sleep for slightly too long and then dash into the kitchen to prep some veg in a panic. Apparently we are hosting the World Veg Eating finals as I scrape and chop 6Kg of spuds and 4Kg of carrots. I’m fine chopping the onions from Morrisons but when I get onto the Lidl onions it’s tears and snotters all the way.
All this and a car full of other stuff is in preparation for the end of season Barbeque which this year is in the Scout Hall as the Glennie is being gentrified and is shut. Unusually people turn up early and help set everything up. The bouncy castle man arrives and we set up the Event Shelter, I check the pig. My greatest fear has been the wind blowing the fire out and me turning up to a raw pig and having to send out for half a hundredweight of sausages. The pig looks delicious, I name him Wilbur, to annoy people.
As our guests arrive Big Mick is hovering about the hog, I have never carved a hog but I’m wearing a lovely pinny and ready for anything. It’s really apparent that the big man is desperate to carve, who am I to thwart a man’s ambitions? Over in the Event Shelter the Gin Society have set up a gin corner which Tweedy tries to catapult onto the bouncy castle while suspending the piñata. Bottles of gin and lemons everywhere.
The ladies of the band have once again surpassed all expectations with the food, what a blow out. The only thing that outnumbers my potatoes is the drink, it’s 2 free drinks with your meal then drink your own. The new rule is drink your own weight in beer. Inside the tables groan under the weight of the food, outside they groan under the weight of the monster cargo. The party is in full swing when Isy announces that it’s time for the slideshow and everyone settles down to giggle and ooh and ah at our last year in pictures. After this it’s time for the 2016 awards. As previously reported we give awards for calamity and stupidity every year, the biggy is the Donkey Award; Mags is awarded it for trying to smash Jim Kilpatrick’s drum during Piping Live. Isy grows increasingly hoarse as she shouts above the blethers and Pipey who won a pair of boxer shorts models them for us. After the awards the music is cranked up and lunacy prevails.
The good thing about having the party here is that the families don’t have to leave at 8, there are kids zooming about everywhere and by the time the bouncy castle guy collects it they are showing no signs of slowing down. The piñata gets a doing, all the kids give it a skelp while Isy dances about like a drunk game show host. There is singing and dancing, a wee snifter or two and some of the learners have their first try on the bagpipe, I manage to get a bit of a tune out of Wee Mel’s small pipes but my coordination has gone and I can’t work the bellows and play, I end up blowing like a fool while the bag deflates. Outside we cremate the piñata, it fought valiantly. The Gin’s All Gone Society pack away their tonic and people start to drift off home. James the Hat, who has so far this week tripped over umpteen kerbs and paving slabs, perches on the back of Clock’s pickup truck. The jump down is too much and he ends up on the floor bleeding again. If this keeps up he’ll be needing a transfusion.
Hazel mops the hall and the Unelected Social Committee clear up. We owe the Kilbarchan Scout Group a huge thank you for letting us run amok on their premises and letting us use their audio/visual equipment. The 2016 season has been well and truly put to bed. Next up is the Cèilidh