Monday, August 4, 2014

So many farewell dinners and a wedding dinner reception with Michael Jackson in London



The other day in Manila, living a Travelife, I attended the nth farewell dinner for a popular ambassador and his wife.

The moment they'd announced they were leaving, there were dozens of farewell dinner offers landing on their doorstep, as so many people wanted to host a dinner for them.

Scroll down to read about dinner with Michael Jackson...




A TRAVELIFE FAREWELL DINNER
FOR 40 PERSONS

As I was close to them, I hosted my own dinner for them.

This was a sit-down dinner for 40 persons on the eve of my departure for Paris in early July. And then I left for Europe for two weeks of good food and great fun.

The moment I returned, it was literally back to the farewell dinner circuit for them.


FROM HOTEL TO AIRPORT
TO FANCY DINNER PARTY

I arrived from almost 24 hours of door-to-door travel time from my Paris hotel to my home.

And then from home I dressed up and then rushed out back again without even pausing for breath, to make it to the first course of a farewell dinner for 50 persons in their honor.

Talk about a never-endingly eventful Travelife.



FAREWELL DINNER 
AFTER FAREWELL DINNER

There were so many other farewell dinners for them over the course of the week, and each one was very enjoyable.

In fact, I began seeing some people so many times in the different dinners, that they started to feel like family.



But perhaps the most touching was the very last night before the ambassador and his wife left.

This was truly the last farewell dinner in a never-ending string of dinners, as they were booked on a noon flight out to Hong Kong the next day.

GREAT STEAKS AND GOOD CONVERSATION



We all sat around eating steaks and just reminiscing about old times.

Most of us were asked to give a short speech, so I recalled how I'd met this ambassador and his wife at the very beginning of their stay, as they'd accepted my invitation to a Travelife dinner.

Since then, I'd been in their home so many times that I'd lost count. As long as I was free, I would join their events -- and they did the same.

Scroll down to read about dinner with Michael Jackson...



DINNER WITH MICHAEL JACKSON

Most interestingly perhaps, someone suddenly asked them that night about their most memorable dinner in a string of never-endingly interesting dinners.


The ambassador said, almost without a second thought: "Dinner with Michael Jackson."

Of course we were all surprised.

Personally, I expected him to mention a famous president or the prime minister of an important country; but I'd never expected him to say "Michael Jackson" simply because it was such an unlikely combination to have this ambassador and his wife, and the late King of Pop.

A WEDDING IN LONDON



It was at someone's wedding reception in London many years ago, where he and his wife, and Michael Jackson, were guests.

The groom, who is a world-famous personality, had invited Michael Jackson and he had accepted the invitation.

Michael showed up with his handlers, looking just like how we all saw him in his later photographs.



And, according to this ambassador, he was gracious, kind and very nice. They were even able to take a lovely photograph together afterwards.

And that ends another interesting story in my never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.





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