Monday, 4 July 2016


About fifteen or sixteen years ago, we had a Swedish friend living in Nottingham. She told us that Midsummer was celebrated by everyone in Scandinavia, so when Midsummer dawned bright and sunny, we decided to throw an impromptu party in her honour. It was one of those idyllic, perfect, spontaneous evenings where we brought a few people together who all hit it off, and we drank, ate and laughed into the early hours of the morning.
The original party. This was in my old house, which had a little wooden summerhouse at the bottom of the garden. Anna is wearing a traditional floral headdress she made. She made a matching one for me too. 
Time passed and Anna left the UK, but every year wherever in the world she was, in memory of that evening, we sent a message to wish each other 'Happy Midsummer'.
A lot of the same people from the original party were able to make it again, which was so lovely. 
A few weeks ago, she sent a message saying she thought she might come over for a few days to visit us for Midsummer. I said to her, 'Do you want to chill or party?' The message came straight back. 'I!'
Gathering armfuls of wild flowers from the allotment to decorate the house for our Midsummer party

She arrived on the Thursday night, so we had a practice session, eating and drinking outside until it went dark.
The next day at brunch, Anna mentioned a great day out she remembered with us, her and our friend from Israel, so we decided to revisit Cromford Mills, built by Richard Arkwright, a pioneer in the Industrial revolution.

After a whirlwind trip, we whizzed home in my new car, which I've named Blanche Dubois, because although she looks beautiful, there's all sorts of problems under the surface.
Wearing a me-made sheet dress. That photo on the right needs to be snapped up by the local rag!
It was time to party! I have to confess, I never felt less like it, since it was the day after the referendum in the UK, but if you can't celebrate, at least you can drown your sorrows with friends.

Thankfully the almost incessant rain we had in June stopped for a day in order to allow us to sit outside. Phew. I was so busy plying people with food and drink that I forgot to take any photos. Fortunately Anna took one of me and my adorable friend, Varanya.
I've been wearing this dress a lot recently. It's a 1960s crimplene column dress with some snazzy diamante trim. I love the colour and the fact that it makes me look tall.

The next day we met up briefly with my little sis who was in Nottingham for the day, went into town, got home in time for our lovely friend Angela to visit and then went out for a meal and to the pub, where we were the last ones to leave.
By day 4, when we took Anna back to the station to get her train down to the airport, after three nights of partying, we were all pretty much broken. There was just enough energy for a quick group selfie.

We called it the selfie of pain. :D

God, we had SO much fun. Let's do it all again next year!