Saturday 8th May, Party in Bletchingley!

Now I had another mission. My boss in Bletchingley was throwing a huge party tonight, and although I had said I wouldn't be able to make it, I'd come to change my mind. My little mate Mai had phoned a few days ago, and she sounded quite down. Even though her tumour has completely disappeared, she still has to complete the course of radiotherapy, and without going into detail, it's nasty, nasty stuff. She was hoping I'd come back for the party, and being a typical female, she knew exactly what to say to make me feel guilty. So that's why you could have seen me at the Newcastle bus station at lunchtime, boarding a coach for London. Six and a half hours on a crowded coach was a prospect I tried to ignore. I tried to sleep, tried to read, even tried to work on my computer but the fatty next to me didn't leave me enough elbow room. So in the end, I resigned myself to watching the minutes tick by on the coach's digital clock. It was a long long ride!

My friends Phyllida and Eleanor picked me up at the train station in Redhill, and brought me out to Bletchingley. It was nine o'clock, which I thought was a bit late to be arriving, but the party was just getting started. I saw Mai through the crowd, dressed as Pocohontas. She hadn't seen me, so I snuck up on her, and remember what I said about surprising people? When I saw the look on her face, the six and a half hour coach ride was worth it!

Mai, looking the part as Pocohontas.

No-one had told me it was a costume party, of course. Poor Phyllida and Eleanor were expecting a gathering of a handful of my friends, not a gala event with almost a hundred guests, two huge marquis' in the garden, a three piece band, and waiter service! I had simply texted them with "Party in Bletchingley tonight if you're interested." Hee hee... another surprise, eh?