Book Club by wander.lust
Now if you're thinking: "Safari Dinner"? Isn't that a slightly childish activity, best suited to giggling twenty-somethings in an alcoholic haze rushing excitedly from room to room down the corridors of the halls of residence for an endless succession of courses each one progressively more dried-up and more burnt than the one before?", then I'm retorting: "You haven't met Mrs Botogol's book club!"
To this day Mrs B will maintain that they do all read the books but I, frankly, suspect a poker school. Let's just say that the first Wednesday of last month (The Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy) featured precious few Brodie's Notes but rather a lot of mysterious ATM withdrawals, and all along our street they are still talking about that all-nighter pulled in the back garden of number 50 during the long, long, cicada'd, mexican, velvet summer of 2006 (The Beach by Alex Garland)
A week or two ago some neighbours knocked on the doors in our road to apologise in advance for the noise of an upcoming 21st birthday party - "Oh don't worry about it all", charmed my friend and fellow book-club widower, Roger, "make as much noise as you like for next week, round at ours, there's Book Club!"
On Safari, the husbands rose to the occasion (without a barbecue even) and did much of the cooking while the book-club critiqued: it was like a cross between the Hell's Kitchen and the F-Word. I has been allotted course three of seven labelled, confusingly, the starter. With one husband-course before me and two to follow, reputations were up for grabs and Sabotage and Mischief caught my ear and laid out their tempting wares. After some thought I decided upon a rich and creamy high-carb, spoiler following which courses 4-7 would surely languish uneaten and unappreciated. Potato soup with lardons and focaccia bread, preceded by an amuse-bouche of an individual ravioli parcel stuffed with goats cheese all in a sour-cream source. But midweek Mrs Botogol saw the Ocado order and she suggested firmly that I might switch to my signature prawns in a warm courgette salad. I cooked it theatre-style in front of my less than amazed guests.
All in all, I think it went down very well.
And let's be clear: not a single one of the courses at our safari dinner were the least burnt or dried up, indeed the book club safari was a resounding success, for I heard a rumour that one of the club sometimes reads this blog, and I don't want any small waxen miniature Botogol pierced with a ceremonial needle on the first Wednesday of July (Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad)