I'm still rather sick with this headcold so shall keep this entry reasonably short; I've had a lot of time this weekend to think about family and how important it is - no matter how much they may give you the "scheise" from time to time.
My family isn't particularly big - although we are spread across Australia (and the world) - and since my Granny passed away (aka Events Coordinator) we don't often get together. So when my sister's birthday rolled around this year and our cousin K said she was free for dinner, it looked like three family members in the same restaurant on the same evening was going to be as good as it gets. Well, in the space of a few days, we managed to rustle up over ten guests to Fu Long Seafood Restaurant in Box Hill, all family members and all ready for some serious asian food & Tsing Tao.
In typical "my family" fashion, we couldn't agree on a banquet (there were about eight different options) so instead each put in our orderes and divvied up the dishes. My husband, sister and brother in law shared in some delicious Peking Duck + spring rolls for a more than substantial entree. Plates of seafood/prawn combo's, Mongolian beef, salt/pepper tofu, beef & blackbean, honey chicken and other delights promptly followed and did not disappoint.
But the best thing about the night? The company. I met K's "new" baby M which I hadn't met since he was born last September - who placidly and patiently allowed himself to be passed from person to person around the entire table without a word of protest. We marvelled at the resemblence between my aunty M, Dad and our Papa. And we chatted and laughed familiarly - like no time had passed at all since our last get together - until all other customers had left and the waiters started setting up for the next days' lunch.