See how life unfolds when you are flexible!
Next was supposed to have been a quiet, pre-arranged Dinner for 2 @ 7, an easy night-in, or so they thought! So we all thought.
I left them to enjoy the evening breeze and the mountain view.
Then comes a call from my dear friend, Nevada, seeking an opinion for a concoction. That led to an invitation to sample, followed by "How many guests do you have in-house? (Two) Bring them!" "Just let them know that this is all an experiment", was his only proviso.
Of course, the thing about running a B&B is that you never know who is coming to dinner. And, even when you have met, you are not always sure what their appetite is like. Are they exhausted from jet lag, are they looking forward to a romantic "just us" candlelight dinner, are they open to shifting gear and trying the unexpected?
Well, Arnoud and Tjitske certainly were open. Here is how it went. "My friend is experimenting on a coconut shrimp dish and I am invited to taste. Would you like to join us? We will take our dinner and just share." Maybe it was my infused enthusiasm along with assumed consent, maybe it was built-up trust over our welcome introductions earlier, perhaps the seeming simplicity of the venue change, or just the way they are. I would like to believe it was all of the above. We got dressed while Charmaine made a salad and grilled our contributions to the potluck soiree.
We started out on what was seen and done since they arrived in Jamaica, suggested the not-to-be-missed experiences as they continue on their journey, in exchange for much on life in their Netherlands. Clearly well-travelled, all, we segued seamlessly to comparisons of carnivals in different countries, to gateways opening to Cuba, to cultural norms and taboos, challenges the world over, through to coffee shops vs traditional cafes.
As the natural light of the evening dimmed, and candle lights and city lights flickered, our host did the unusual. He took a telephone call. He was being invoted to be featured with a few of his favourite things in the following Sunday's newpaper, and he started to list them for us; a sort of dress rehearsal for the staging later that week. The conversation turned to other things and the evening continued to be delighful for all of us, ending with expressions of appreciation for an unforgettable day and night.
One week later, Arnoud and Tjitske, still relaxing in Jamaica, sent this photo., with a note that read:
"What an amazing night was that! Thanks a lot"
By the way, the potluck was perfect; Herbed Coconut Shrimp Rice, Jerk Marinaded & Grilled Chicken Tenderloins, Fresh Garden Salad, finished off with Ice Cream topped with a Coconut Chocolate Spread served with Freshly Brewed Coffee.