Phil's 70th and Prague

November 2018

We were shamed into it really, whilst still in Montana, by an e-mail from a friend enquiring about the date for Phil's 70th birthday party, as he needed to find suitable accommodation for the big day. Christine immediately sprang into action, attempting to make up for her failure to already have a cunning plan in the works.

This would be no ordinary 70th birthday party. The big day fell on the Mexican "Day of the Dead" and when combined with a Frank Turner lyric, the theme of the party was born. It was to be a "Day of the Not-Dead-Yet" Party. Invitations were despatched with dire warnings that moustaches and sombreros would be compulsory and issued at the door. On the big day, our house became a Mexican Taverna, complete with Taco bar. Two large piñatas were hung, one in the shape of a 7 and the other a 0. Filling the empty piñatas had been a party game in itself, requiring the posting of two kilos of chocolates through a small flap in each one.

The grandkids gave the seal of approval to the tacos during the afternoon and we were ready.

Taco Quality Testing.

Gareth gives the go-ahead.

Guests attempting not to be embarrassed wearing false (in most cases) moustaches and tiny sombreros.

That's not a sombrero....

Our neighbours, Dan and Lisa really entered into the spirit of the event, arriving in fancy dress but Dan's sombrero was over-shadowed by the one gifted to Phil by Glyn.

After a visit to the Taco bar, the ceremonial bashing of the piñatas proved more challenging than anticipated, allowing plenty of scope for the recording of video for later blackmail purposes.

....more like it, Dan and Lisa, but....

....that is a sombrero!

Kaz and Eri wondering if this is a normal British birthday celebration.

Blinded by the cake!

Gruff helping with the left over cake situation.

After the party celebrations, the main birthday event was still to come - a trip to Prague for a couple of days, including (surprise, surprise) a Frank Turner gig.

Our buddies' son, Harry, and his wife, Alice, kindly provided accommodation in their apartment in the city, joined us at some of the locality's hostelries, and even cooked a wonderful meal at home too.

Birthday boy begins his tour of the city.

Charles Bridge

Even more sweets that we crammed into those piñatas!

Old Town Square

Astronomical Clock

A strange protest parade we happened across.

Mr Pillow checks the water quality in Prague.

After an epic Sunday lunch and siesta it was time to head downtown, track down the preferred watering hole of other Frank Turner fans, and get hydrated on ridiculously cheap Czech beer before the gig.

A quick e-mail to Frank before the gig resulted in the dedication of his performance of "Live Fast, Die Old" to "the guy with a birthday whose name I've forgotten." We'll forgive you, Frank, especially as you had to look up how to play the song and re-learn the words specially.

Dedication to the birthday boy, who minutes later disappeared into the mosh pit, as one should at 70!

We were close enough to feel the sweat!

Here's hoping there will be many more birthdays, equally as mad.

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