Sunday, October 12, 2014

An ambassador's family for a casual Sunday dinner, and a Monday night spent redecorating my house after flying in from Bangkok.


Tonight, back at home living a Travelife, I invited a recently-arrived ambassador and his family to dinner at my home.

It was going to be just a casual Sunday evening thing, so I set up a buffet of Philippine food and  paired this with some pretty rare South African wines, and we all sat around talking and eating until quite late.

And, since in my mind this dinner is part of my birthday celebrations, I served my favourite Filipino foods including sisig and kare-kare -- although this time I made a seafood kare-kare since I'd already had a very big steak last night.

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FINALLY, SOME COMMON TIME

I liked this ambassador and his family ever since I first met them. But I never could sit down properly alone with them in the past months, as I've been away most of the time.

I've had dinner at their home with other people and they've joined my larger dinners with other ambassadors as well.

But tonight, I really intended a very private and relaxing evening.

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FIXED FOR SUNDAY NIGHT

It started out as very spur-of-the-moment, as I'd just returned to Manila from Bangkok on Monday.

Then on Tuesday night, I'd bumped into them at a cocktail party, and we decided to meet up for a Sunday dinner.

A HOUSE WITH A STORY



They were very fascinated with my house, as it's full of objects from all my travels, and almost every single piece has an interesting story.

So I had a merry time regaling them with the stories behind certain paintings, and the provenance of certain items.

THE THING I'M MOST PROUD OF NOW



Of course, I showed them the thing I'm most proud of at the moment.

It's a beautiful nguni skin from Africa, reportedly from a royal cow of a tribal king, and I'd personalised it by painting gold flecks on it using a very special pen I'd bought in Tokyo last month.

I'd bought this pen thinking I'd decorate my house with it, having been inspired by the beautiful villa we'd stayed in at the Royal Mansour in Marrakech last June.

At the beautiful Royal Mansour
in Marrakech last June

THE ONLY NGUNI SKIN OF ITS KIND
IN THE WORLD

This nguni skin with gold flecks on it turned out really beautifully. Everyone I've shown it to so far just can't believe I'd done the painting myself.

But, yes, on Monday night, back from Bangkok, something was on my mind and I just couldn't sleep.

So I decided to do some instant interior decorating, and I spent all night painting gold flecks on this nguni rug and decorating a couple of porcelain stands, on not just another evening in my never-ending, and never-endingly eventful Travelife.



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