It was about time for another party. Fortunately my husband’s (Dutch) company provided the perfect excuse: this year is the celebration for their 50th anniversary. The boss asked me if he could use our backyard for an informal family bbq event and if I would like to organize it. It just had to be something kind of like “gezellig”. The Dutch word gezellig does not have an English equivalent, but it translates roughly into cozy, fun. The vision El Jefe was trying to communicate, was that it had to be something fun, informal and more like a party you’d have with friends and family instead of a formal lunch or dinner.
The Veracruz office is only a small office, so they had no resources to help organize. Fortunately, wife and friend G.’s phone contains a treasure of numbers from reliable caterers, renters of tables & chairs, addresses for decorations and friends that can supply anything and everything. Apart from that, she has a great talent for shopping, which I figured would come in handy at some point.
While I was eying a certain pool area, G. reckoned that an outdoor pool party really is dodgy and not only because of the weather: no one would swim anyway on account of ‘too much information’. It’s just not the thing to do with your (husband’s) colleagues. Thinking back of my colleagues throughout my life, I figured she had a point.
G. fortunately understood where I was coming from (gezellig) and was happy to reject the ‘let’s-go-to-a-hotel-or-restaurant’ idea (fun but not gezellig). We brainstormed about locations that would please everyone and then, as an afterthought, she presented an awesome location: in the middle of an ecological park with large green lawns on top of a hill and with a ‘grand’ view of the Gulf. Perfect!
So off we went with the organizing. We involved the other wives who were willing and able and planned the interior, the mariachi band, the karaoke machine, the entertainment for the kids, the food, the drinks, the cake, the decorations, the cleaning and whatever else was necessary. What G. couldn’t arrange for on the phone, we got during some serious shopping sprees. I just sat, enabled and did the finances.
But the effort we (she) put in was worth it! Once everything came together on Saturday morning, it looked awesome; a ‘professional’ planner couldn’t have done a better job.
And then we waited anxiously for the guests to arrive, while thinking: will they like the venue? Will they like the food?Did we get enough? But as soon as the first guests arrived that went away; they all loved it and before long everyone was having a good time and we started to come down from our adrenaline rush. The location was a little big for the number of people who were actually there, some people had to cancel at the last minute or, worse, just didn’t show up. But in the end it didn’t matter, we had a great time, amazing food and an awesome cake. It really was super gezellig.
Mission accomplished! High five girls! 🙂