TRADE SHOWS – I love them !!

Miles away from the UK I am seeing posts from ex colleagues and friends from Spring Fair and Ambiente. I have a slight twinge of jealousy but only because they brings back happy memories.

I started my journey with Spring Fair in 1989 and Ambiente in 1999.This will be the first year since then that I have not attended in some guise. I may be unusual in the fact that I actually relished the shows.It is a wonderful opportunity to show your wares in the best light possible – and with the money being spent on the stands you’d better make it work. It is also a chance to meet and reconnect with old friends, colleagues and business partners. No better opportunity than these shows to catch up with the industry barometer. It is also the time to brush up on your air kissing skills.

Some basics for shows -the show haircut and the show suit/dress. See how many you can spot! And don’t forget the sensible shoes and the Barocca. It’s about survival and unfortunately sometimes being sensible seems to be long forgotten.

Spring Fair would always mean consecutive nights out in Birmingham and the body progressively screaming for sleep. But no matter what, a day on the stand meant looking alert and behaving professionally. The food experience is best forgotten unless you are one of those that brought a packed lunch – yes I have seen this. And please tell me I am not the only one who has lost her car in that NEC car park. And then on a rare occasion the weather would cause mayhem but it would all be forgotten as the circus moved to Frankfurt.

You knew it was show time as you looked around the plane and clocked familiar faces and it certainly wasn’t a wedding party.It’s advisable to keep quiet during that short journey.

Ambiente provides the opportunity for buyers and sellers to come together from around the globe. There’s a definite buzz and a cacophony of different languages along the aisles. Love the visits on the stands from the most enthusiastic buyers who will spend hours and then ask for a price for 24pcs. Hours of waiting for that one meeting that makes it all worthwhile 😉. Patience is a skill that is needed in good amounts. Oh and those long pointless chats with your colleagues to fill the gaps. I know you like them but by day 5 enough is enough and home beckons.

As a vegetarian in Frankfurt I learnt to love cream cheese and cucumber. But GreenPan upped the stakes on the food front. I discovered that at Spring Fair when the show closes it closes – at Ambiente it’s the time to open the beers and nuts. And nights in Frankfurt during show time would not be complete without a night at a curry house and another at the Irish Bar and definitely one where I would watch others eat hunks of meat!!🤦🏽‍♀️

All that said it’s about getting those listings for the exhibitors and finding that next big thing for the buyers … before your rival!!!

Good luck to all those … hard core show attendees flitting from Birmingham to Frankfurt to Chicago.


The overfamiliar taxi driver ….

I knew it was going to be interesting when after picking me up we didn’t make our way straight to the bypass that leads to the M1, but headed into Bromham.

It was daylight and a Wednesday in Bedford – I’m sure I wasn’t being kidnapped!! And anyway a friend had seen me get into the taxi. Perhaps I’m reading too many Pd James, Ruth Rendell, Donna Leon,Ian Rankin and watching too many cop shows — Vera and Silent Witness, you have a lot to answer to.

But no! He was just short of ⛽️!! He’s already been to Heathrow once today and luckily has a pickup from Terminal 3 which fits in perfectly with my drop off. Jolly good !! He offers to buy me a drink which I politely refuse and proudly produce my water bottle so as not to offend.

But as we approached the petrol station we can see a long queue. So he drives past and doubleS back onto the bypass. The locals will know that the Bedford town is in total meltdown since Sainsbury’s have decided to zhuzh up their offering. Me thinks they are trying harder now Aldi has appeared next door. Don’t worry,I will stay loyal, dear Sainsbury’s. 💕

Anyway back to fuel for a taxi 🚕 that I’ve booked to take me to Heathrow. And because I am so early I am calm. Our next stop is the Shell garage on the dual carriageway towards junction 13. I am still calm.

By Luton we both know how long we’ve lived in Bedford. Me somewhat longer than him ; 21 years vs. 14. We both agree it’s a good location – upon which he reels off all the local towns that are within easy reach – Northampton, Luton, Wellingborough, Milton Keynes and Cambridge. I think I am losing the will.

I need to learn not to be so friendly !! I am now bonding further with the Asian taxi driver over Southall restaurants and which one does the best breakfast. I haven’t the heart to tell him I’ve only ever had that in one !!! 😂

He’s very accommodating and is happy for me to listen to anything I want. I decide not to choose Hindi music incase it leads to more conversation and opt for the safe option of BBC 5 Live.

We arrive in good time and I leave a tip because I am grateful to be out. The last straw was the belch from my new friend…..



Dear Mrs May … would you mind if I called you Theresa?

Dear Theresa

I’m leaving the country !

Don’t panic I’m not going for good just for a few weeks.

So whilst I am away I would love it if you could get the following bits resolved. Think you really need to pass the Brexit parcel on and leave it to someone else? There’s so much more to sort.

⁃ Education: yes please🤷🏽‍♀️

⁃ Transport: yes please. 🤷🏽‍♀️

⁃ Healthy economy: pretty please 🙏🏽

⁃ Health: I don’t care much for the new digital doctor service. I don’t much like calling every morning at 8 for the same day appointment and not getting through either. You’ll be soon telling us to self diagnose and medicate! I neither have the words or the time to write more and know there are others more qualified than me to do this.

⁃ Weather : if you could just by chance organise another summer like 2018 I’d would be super grateful.

You may be reading this and shaking your head in dismay. Is it too simplified.. do I need to submit a 100page PowerPoint for each proposal. Why ? You have a host of experts… don’t you? You as the PM need to deliver it.

I know you don’t have many friends at the moment (even though the Daily Mail is being a total suck ass .. again) and after what I am asking you to do it may make it worse. But at least you may gain some brownie points with the people ! Here goes …

⁃ parliament: do you think that this is how people in industry or education or healthcare behave towards each other? Is this what you think intelligent debate is? What a rotten example you’re setting to the nation. Shame on you. If you want to have bants do it in your own time. I’m sorry if this sounds harsh.

⁃ Your team or lack of it. 1. Grayling: a posting to Tasmania? What harm could he possibly do ?2.Gove: lock him in the under-stairs cupboard. 3.Boris: I’m assuming you will be a NFI at all future raves chez Boris. I feel he deserves an ambassadorial role somewhere far far far away. 4.David Davies: Send him somewhere where he can grow some balls! Sorry to be so crude but there’s no other way of putting it. 5.Jacob Rees Mogg: Don’t turn your back on him😈🔪.

Oooh another idea perhaps they could form the new Mongolian Trade Advisory Board.

Just so there are no mix ups. I am a Labour voter (could you tell ..but would be happy if Jezza took up a new project) and a remainer. If you need me just PM me ( ask one of your young advisors what that means) and as I’m out of work at the moment I could spare some time. I won’t blame the B word for my redundancy whilst others would rightly do so . I’m of Indian origin,married to an Englishman and did an Engineering Degree. Imagine how many boxes you would tick with me on side ✅✅✅✅

I’m not saying I have the answers but would certainly add some spice to the debate!!

I’m back on 13th March and will wait with some anxiety for 29th March. Actually I may extend my stay 🤔.

Toodle pip and Namaste.



NB: enjoy Brussels 👍🏽 and say hi to Mr Barnier.

I think I may have too many shoes ? 👢👡👠🥿👟🥾

To be clear from the off, by shoes I am obviously referring to the whole family of footwear. No discrimination here.

You may be wondering “what makes you think you have too many shoes Seema?And how many constitute as too many?” I think I always knew but in the spirit of New Year openness and cleansing I am willing to put it in writing. I am actually too embarrassed and lazy to count them. All I know is that I have three crates in the under-stairs cupboard, stacks in the spare bedroom wardrobe and a big bag in the boot🤦🏽‍♀️. My cardrobe was always fully equipped.

I’m a 5/5.5 in shoe size (38/38.5 in European sizing … wonder if they’ll stop putting that on after Brexit) so bloody average. Never have a problem buying shoes. But I can’t blame the easy availability of stock for them ending up in my house. I wonder if my job at Lilley & Skinner (that was a high street shoe store chain many many years ago) in my teens is responsible! I don’t buy online … need the drama of trying on. And loving the new headset worn by store staff – I would have added a clipboard too if it was in my control.

Seriously I only have

⁃ Boots : ankle, knee length, flats,heeled, black, grey and tan.And those blue suede thigh length ones that were a bargain buy from TK Maxx. There were some red knee length FM boots(if you know you know)once upon a time. And don’t forget I do have some walking boots 🥾 which migrate between the house and shed. But why is it that every year I want flat black boots? I think it’s just the ritual of saying it.

⁃ Flats: all shapes and colours because every Spring I am heard to say “really need some comfy flats for this year”.

⁃ Casual or smart: well everything to take me from morning to work to an evening out 👍🏽

⁃ Trainers : indoor and outdoor (gosh I sound super sporty). I have but 3 pairs but for years I had one whereas the hubby had crate fulls.

⁃ Wellies: hmmm when did I use them last ??

⁃ Slippers : yes they were a Christmas pressie but they are super cosy during these winter months. Wear your gift people and don’t regift these beauties.

⁃ Flip flops : who doesn’t love a flip flop. Even the trendy Havanas have made it here.

⁃ Wedges and sandals : goodness let’s skip this one otherwise we will lose the will.

⁃ Indian box- the chappals (leather or plastic flats) and shiny party sandals. I know all Indian women will have this category covered.

I do look after my things and am still wearing shoes from 8 years ago!!

I’ve been known to buy two colours if I find a comfy pair. I’ve also bought the same shoes if they are super comfy😉. I went through a phase of buying those individual clear shoe boxes – that was not only going to make the storage neater but I was going to be able to see at a glance all my options. Great in theory but I would have needed a separate room to store all that air! I gave up on it and have the boxes hiding from me behind some dresses and coats. In the original days of Polaroid I tried attaching a photo of the shoes to box – let’s just say this lasted all of 1 attempt. I should really stop reading magazine articles about storage solutions!!! The rule now is if they are expensive the box stays. Simple.

It’s always been about comfort over fashion – stupidly wide feet decide that. I am in awe of those women who can wear those pointy shoes with high heels. No.. it’s not because I’m in my 50s. I never could. They make it look so easy and classy. Heels supposedly elongate your foot/ankle and make you look sexier (that’s what I heard many years ago). I personally can’t see what’s sexy about someone walking pigeon steps or teetering most of the time. I do have a collection heels that rarely come out. But I normally carry a spare flatter pair if bag allows 😉👠🥿. And if all else fails just take them off and walk barefoot until a taxi passes by.

I did try and de-clutter recently and I got rid of one pair of orange patent sandals 🤷🏽‍♀️ – What were they for ?? Very poor cost:wear ratio I’m sure. I am certain I don’t have an addiction!! Or affliction. Let’s see if I can get through 2019 without buying any new footwear 🤔. Having no job will certainly focus my mind. So if you see me fawning over some tan sandals similar to several pairs already in my collection I give you full permission ( and so does hubby) to drag me away and make an example of me.

Actually on reflection, I MAY have too much of many things in this life. Don’t worry I’m not going to bore you – not today anyway.

Now to get ready for tonight’s dinner. What shoes to wear?Do any of them work with this dress?????? I know what will happen. I will try several pairs and then parade in front of hubby and say which one as I walk with a left and right of different styles. He’ll no doubt say “they both look great”. I’ll put them away carefully and then either the comfy black boots or flat tan ankle boots will emerge for the night.🤦🏽‍♀️



What’s weight got to do with it? And how life got in the way of a perfect body.

It turns out quite a lot. I have spent most of my adult life worrying about, discussing or contemplating my weight and my body shape. And if not mine I have been involved in conversations with family and friends about their weight!! And have probably commented about others’ weights without their knowledge and read countless articles and watched numerous tv shows all connected to weight/diets.

Health Warning: for those that know me you know that I have several food rules ;

⁃ I would rather eat my calories than drink them.

⁃ There’s always room for chips, mangoes and puddings.

⁃ You can’t leave my house without eating.

⁃ I need something sweet after a meal. I blame my dad !!

oMy whole life revolves around food. I am not a health guru so please do not follow any of my advice!! And certainly feel free to roll your eyes and if you have to “tut”, please do remember we are all god’s children. But I’m not getting into the religion discussion here …

So being born into an Indian family was never going to be great start when it comes to watching your weight. It’s like starting with a really poor golf handicap!! Throw into that a mum who was one of the best cooks around. The house was never short of

⁃ aloo and mooli parathas,

⁃ aloo and puris,

⁃ pakoras,

⁃ chaat on special days,

⁃ home made kulfi ,

⁃ kheer

⁃ dosas when she had time

⁃ Mithai (Indian sweets); very partial to jalebis, gujrela and rasmalai (if you know you know).

Let alone the day to day roti and subji. We rarely ate non-Indian food. Why would you as a vegetarian? I think the first foray for us out of home was Pizza Hut, and yes the extra chillies were requested.

How cruel that as a result of my upbringing I am afflicted with a love of samosas -carbs wrapped in carbs, deep fried and served with imli (tamarind) chutney made with kilos of sugar!! I won’t even go into the world of chaat ( Street foods) that just oooze calories. Don’t please write in and tell me about the lower calorie oven baked option samosas that involve filo pastry. I promise to try these one day !!

I then learnt in recent years that mangoes are one of the highest sugar content buggers around 🤦🏽‍♀️. Someone up there surely has it in for me. So what difference has this information made to you Seema you may be wondering: none whatsoever. We’re talking about mangoes.💕💕

I always did sport at school- tennis/hockey/netball/volleyball and the obligatory country dancing!! So remaining active must have burnt all the calories I was taking in.I recall even during sixth form going through a phase of logging what I ate. I was hardly big, whatever that means, and even started running before school(for a very short time). So what was the issue at that age I wonder🤷🏽‍♀️.

I look at the photos post graduation from my 20s and realise that I often wore clothes that were too big for me. I was also totally addicted to step aerobics and spraining my ankles.

In my 30s I had Aarti and for a while lost my way . Until when she was about 2/3 a so called male friend asked whether I was pregnant. Total head fuck! (Excuse the bad language). Ok we’re now signed upto to do the moonwalk. I recall doing it with a gang of girls from Cole & Mason but Debbie Acquaye and I were the only two signed up for the full marathon. Is there something we don’t know? I was probably at my fittest during this period. I recall my knees crying with pain during the last two miles but we made it.

Aarti used to poke my tummy and announce with great pleasure “mummy your tummy is like play dough”. Do you have to like your children? 🙄. I started Tae Kwon Do with her and trained and graded for years. Art got her black belt but I fell behind because of injuries!! And never went back. Oh I miss those hours of training 😐.

In my 40s I think I was fit too. I had discovered running with Simon. I was determined to be in shape. I had my first frozen shoulder and operation. I remember crying when I was unable to run due to the excruciating pain.

In my 50s I’ve discovered yoga. I also had my second frozen shoulder but the yoga helped to give me strength back sooner than before. I just need to be a master of my time so yoga becomes part of my day. I have realised that I need more focus.

So clever dressing is a great trick but that won’t make you healthy. I wear bikinis but ensure I am thousands of miles away from anyone who knows me. And probably like most women have a selection of sizes in my wardrobe. I also know that when I’m down about my weight I avoid clothes shopping and have targeted shoes, bags and jewellery. That explains an awful lot.

All through my work life I can confidently state that weight was one of the main topics of conversations

⁃ diets of the day

⁃ Gurus of the day

⁃ Fashions that we love or not ; those that flatter not( remember leggings coming in and low waist jeans 😂

⁃ Ponchos – what to make me really look pregnant?

⁃ Crop tops – thank the Lord I have always been too old for this.

The rule is simply to do what you can and if you want something you have to push yourself..right? And how you feel is your right whatever size and shape you happen to be. No amount of lecturing will make you do what you are not ready to tackle.

I’ve been on very few diets – one was during the run up-to my wedding with Mr G. I did two months of no carbs. And the week before the wedding I ate a whole bag of samosas. I also did the Carol Vorderman detox once. It was quite easy as I was already a non smoking, non coffee drinking, vegetarian who rarely drank alcohol. Blimey I sound great fun 😂. Both these plans worked for me. The only other food related thing I have done is controlling my portions occasionally, which again is difficult with Indian food – dishes just fill the table and are never ending. I feel that I may be sounding just pure greedy now.

My exercise regime has been a total rollercoaster over the years. From nothing to total addict…and somewhere sensible in between. But I have noticed that age has been the greatest enemy to me. My two frozen shoulders and subsequent operations made me realise how important exercise was to me.

Enjoy those samosas, chips, mangoes and puddings but in moderation. God I sound like one of those gurus 🤦🏽‍♀️. I, who have no self restraint when it comes to food wish you well.

Whatever you decide … stay healthy! The more you exercise the more samosas you can eat or doesn’t it work like that? For years I thought my good eats would counteract my bad eats. 👍🏽 … wishful thinking 🤔



Christmas Tree Tales 🎄

So I left you last time saying I’d report back on how it all went.

Getting the house decked out was top priority; well in my head it was.So off we went on Saturday 8th December 2018 to get the trees. We got to the Stagsden Christmas Shop at 9am for tree selection duty only to notice that there was little stock about – what’s going on? Apparently people have been super keen and had started buying in November. Come on people! This is crazy, surely! Let’s agree not to talk Christmas until December 1st . We all need to know the rules of engagement. Anyway, I digress. Two trees are chosen within a few minutes- I can see more cars coming into the car park!! It pays to be early. And the kind people would deliver on Monday. Done ✅ Ofcourse we got some holly and mistletoe too.

Remember I become a magpie and have to have anything that is sparkly, shiny and glistens. So we then move onto Fleurette to buy a wreath. FFS they only have 2 left and they have to make one up for me and would be ready for Monday. Perfect planning: trees and wreath arriving together. What’s going on I ask? People have been super keen this year and we started selling Christmas things early. “Can I have a gold bow on the wreath please”? I ask. The young lady apologises and says calmly “we’ve run out of gold ribbon!!” I think, don’t be ridiculous .. it’s Christmas. Gold is one of the foundation materials – how can you possibly run out before Christmas Eve! Trauma is averted with use of silver bronze rosy gold number . Judge for yourself – it would have been better in gold.

Move swiftly onto Monday 10th December and two kind gentlemen not only deliver both trees but also place them in their respective holders. What a result for the hubby! Another job ticked off the list. The gentlemen refuse my generous offer of tea and mince pies – they have other customers that they need to make happy! 🎄🎄

So Miss Planning and Prep has the decorations all ready to do the smaller tree but the bigger tree would have to stay naked for the week!😂. But I decide that I can move it slightly as they have left it too close to the window. 10ft +tree falling on me alert. I dance and wonder what will break as it falls on me. I somehow manage to keep it from falling and as I move without any real idea of what I’m doing I hear a crack. Dread fills me and think how will I explain this … luckily the crack I’ve heard is the holder locking and the tree is stuck at an angle. It has neither fallen towards the piano or the sideboard.Whoever said I was clumsy can add this to the list. So I let go gingerly and step back and view the scene. I report the incident to hubbyquarters and visualise him rolling his eyes. I leave the the sad tree and go and spend time with the normal one in the lounge. I decorate it – silver and purple. All good. Take a photo and send to the fam. I then leave the house for a few days.

Both hubby and I return late on 15/12. Both are resolved to deal with the felled tree first thing on Saturday morning. After numerous attempts we know that this tree needs to be chopped at the bottom … they’ve sharpened it like a pencil and the poor holder can’t grab it however hard it tries 😂.

Can we find a saw? Ofcourse not !! Off he goes to buy another one. I think he is feeling quite macho as he saws away and shouts when he catches me filming him “is nothing sacred”! The Tree is finally in and looking fabulous.

The house becomes more Christmas like as the days go on. And then we have the second tree drama —2018 what is going on?? The smaller tree obviously feeling neglected decides to throw a tantrum and starts shedding its needles. At this rate there will be no second tree. What to do ?? “Hello, I’m really sorry to call you and I know it’s a strange thing to say. And for the 2nd year running….”. The lovely gentlemen came and replaced the sick tree. It happens occasionally.🤷🏽‍♀️

The house was used and abused.

Lots of comings and goings and that is what it is for afterall. We had a busy but bountiful and loving festive period. We won’t mention the silly cough cold flu thing that’s become my close friend.

There may be some glitter about but I will embrace it.

The day to pack up arrives and as I lie in bed I can hear him downstairs wrestling with the trees. If I dawdle a little more than normal the job will be done. He does have 3 trees to tackle. I find the packing away tiresome this year and have not been organised. I am sure that will cause angst in December.

But to more important things , Easter is April 19th! And I know from social media that Easter Trees are now a thing …. 😉




Planning done (that’s for another blog I’m working on 😂).I thought i’d share my observations of the event that we organised. Too many names to mention all but it was great to see everyone and meet new friends! No really it was 😉. And by now you know how obsessed I am with lists so I’ve done it chronologically -why wouldn’t you ?

11.30 Hair in curlers.

15:00 Henna on right hand – why not. It will make me sit still for an hour. And it’s a novelty for my American friend.

16:00What to wear yaar?

Lengha, sari or a cocktail dress.

Let’s go sari- Black net with lots of gold and red embellishments on palla -worn Gujarathi style to hide the belly!👍🏽. Poor things are either left hanging in the cupboard or stuffed in a suitcase for months. Let’s have a sari amnesty during 2019??It’s on, just about and in the rush I forget my bindi but not my spare comfy sandals (planning and prep ladies).Looking like a poodle with the curls now the pins are out. Oh well !!

17:15 Arrive to find there’s a party to be had. Mindi and his NRI crew are blasting the music and the catering team are in full swing of setting up. The Park Inn have done us proud.

17:30 The event planning team are all looking glam – Suman in electric blue sari, Sati in her silk pattered number, Deepali was the lady in red,Manasi in shimmery black, Parvati in her sharara and Preethi looking classy with her hair up in 60s stylie. Don’t worry we did have the obligatory visit to the ladies’ toilets with pins to adjust various saris – Suman’s and mine!!Ive said it before no Indian function is complete without it.

18:20 Welcome everybody – no we don’t have a red carpet !! How much can we give for £35!! Jeez what the hell has happened- all these guests are turning up early (Tejal!!) or on time. Don’t they know it’s an Indian function Luckily we are ready for them with the welcome drink of bubbles and for the teetotallers there is Shloer. Hmm there would be if I hadn’t left it in the boot of my 🚙. Emergency phone call to base – “bring Shloer now, over and out”.Holding measures agreed with caterer- orange juice quick ! And relax. Think we should have had clipboards? Cash was exchanged for last minute guests (they owe you Aparna 😉).

Hello .. welcome … please do help yourself to a drink, check your table plan (I insist you look at it and admire it – all those hours of-cutting and pasting need to be acknowledged 😂. I now recall how crap Prit Stick is- bring in the heavy duty glue ladies !) and move through. Thankyou.

Hello … no I don’t have you on our list. I understand there are other parties within the hotel tonight🤦🏽‍♀️

Hello .. no sorry sir I don’t have you on our list. In understand there are other parties within the hotel tonight. 🤦🏽‍♀️🤦🏽‍♀️

Hello.. no sorry think you’re at the wrong party. This is an Indian event. 5 minutes pass and Mrs Ramona Rodenas returns and I let her in as she is in fact at the right party 🙏🏽🤷🏽‍♀️ because she’s booked “one with Indian food”. Apologies accepted and I remember they booked through me 😂. The cutest granddad checking when dinner would be served as he has to leave early.

And Devinder Gabri arrives looking fabulous with her hubby … yes he has a camera. Our saviour for the evening. All the auntijis arrive in style. The unclejis have scrubbed up pretty well too. Must give a special shout out to Mayaji and Shabana who are always supportive.

Everyone is looking fabulous darling – saris, suits, dresses, jumpsuits and the men looked ok too. The volume of hairspray is tangible so watch those naked flames. Thank goodness for the no smoking policy.

The children are here. No, I don’t think you can have the bubbles how about some orange juice? Phew -a near incident with licensing laws. 🤫

19:30 We have a schedule… yes we do!

Suman and I get the party started. We welcome our guests, Mr Yasin, our MP and the BABA boys with their more important halves.We have a room full of elders,adults, teenagers, young kids, under 5s, Indians, non-Indians. dancers. Wannabe dancers , vegetarians, gluten free, vegans, don’t do spice 😂, drinkers, teetotallers and so many more.

Infact people had come from all over England (Leicester, Birmingham, Cheshire, Oxford..)and some as far off as San Francisco because they’d heard there was a party in town. The government has even sent the local MP to keep a close eye on the shenanigans.

19:45 Mindi – the crooner. Sing whilst we eat our starters we’d said, something gentle whilst we eat we’d agreed. Well that didn’t go to plan! Who could resist dancing to the lovely Hindi songs. My partners on the dance floor- Parvati, Manasi,Nicky,Monica and Arun. My hubby commented … “does everyone know the words to every Hindu Bollywood song “? Obviously 🙄.

20:15 Performances to entertain the crowd

⁃ Shreya first with her Bollywood numbers, jhatkas and matkas deserved a waah waah.She’s no Leila! She more … (if you know you know)

⁃ The dance group from Milton Keynes were just awesome. We thought the lead man would dislocate something with all frenetic moves.Their kaale chashme (Black glasses)were cool 😎!! Rashmi Diwadkar you guys were great.

⁃ And the ever classic Jitendra was doing fine . Then some woman insisted on joining him and not only singing but playing a giant rattle?!?

The flash mob just turned into a dance off between the guys and girls! Proper wedding style behaviour.

21:30 to midnight

Just a period of eating and dancing. What DJ wouldn’t want a crowd like this. Jumping from Hindi Bollywood numbers to Bhangra to a bit of pop. I have videos people – just remember this!I think I even saw Abhay,Deepali,Vinita and Sanjeev keeping up with the youngsters.

Think we needed a bigger dance floor so Gigi and her sister don’t have to dance on the carpet and Simon Grantham & Phil Naylor can really show their grooves – and not just the lightbulb and door knob moves! All the help from Sujatha on the dance floor was welcome. I looked around the room at one point to see family photos being taken by Sati’s clan – nearly half the room!😂. Others used the photo booth area set up which looked like a Princess’s throne – pretty and pink (in this new PC world – I would like to say it could be a throne for anyone).

22:30 Raffle

Manasi and Deepali carried this off with aplomb after Deepali and crew had sold tickets all evening. Happy winners were caught on camera.

Food glorious food

The catering staff led by Dal; small in stature but big in impact . A chair here , a chair there, a place setting somewhere else, more rice , more naans, more this, more that …. smiles all round and nothing was too much trouble. But Suman has briefed them well. If only I had a wedding party to book. There’s not even a special birthday in sight. 🤷🏽‍♀️

And let’s not forget the sweet table organised by Sati – enjoyed by both the kids and the adults. Am sure her dentist daughter did not approve.

Childminder Raksha

Where did the children go?? Oh yes that rooom we asked for – far as possible 🤫😉. So all the mums and dads could party.

Time to say goodbye

The security guard strolls in at 1am. Time to stop the revelry.The catering team are doing selfies, not without me they don’t !😉The DJs seem to be starting a private party…

I leave with my feet intact and a car full of dress-up materials, booze not drunk, stationery, boards, disposable cups and other random bits. I note that other members of the team and their families have quietly cleared up everything else.

See you next time (Parvati you may have been first on the dance BUT I was the last, did someone say I was competitive?)