More drinks and farewells (16th - 18th May 2008)

Friday, 16th May 2008: Tonight was the last work drinks with Francois - why, why, are you leaving us???? It so happened to also be the day our team was moving to another building so the day was somewhat 'unproductive' with all the commotion (well, it was Friday too...). :) We are still located on Tory St but just in a different building.

Drinks at work started at 3pm (gosh, that was early!) and Ashvin did a fantastic job getting most of us to chip in for drinks and pizza. Hmm, our last drinks in this office...ah, the memories...

Around 5pm, we moved on to Kitty's and continued on with drinks and nibbles. Francois bought a round of tequila for everyone - woo! After 2 beers and this, my head was beginning to feel somewhat light. I need to get some food soon!

I had another drinks function at El Horno, a Mexican themed bar just a few doors away from Kitty's with friends from salsa. I've walked past several times and often hear salsa, merengue or bachata music playing but never got around going in. I don't think the others have been there either so when Ramnish suggested we all went over for drinks before heading out dancing, I thought "YES!". So goodnight boys at Kitty's, hello salsa people!

I believe the staff at El Horno (this is such a weird name, suggests "the horny" though I highly doubt that is what it means) had not seen patrons dancing salsa in the small bar but we did it anyway. Caught a few stares from other people but we had a ball dancing :) It was nice to dance here despite the congestion - it was just a different place than the usual Latinos Bar. We should do this again, gang!

Caught up with Kalwant and Sharon who came along for drinks and with Ron headed to grab a kebab for dinner before heading to JJ Murphy's, another Irish pub on Cuba Mall, where the girls met up with their workmates for more drinks. I didn't stay long as I've had a long day. Besides, I wasn't going to drink anymore since I've a swim session with my coach tomorrow (yeah, I've started private lessons now on a casual basis to work on my strokes). You guys enjoy yourself!

Saturday, 17th May 2008: Around 2pm, I headed to Southern Cross Bar on Abel Smith Street where Brazilian band, BraZealand, was playing a 2-hour gig. This is the first I've heard of this band (other than Batucada, I don't know of any Brazilian band in town) and I'm quite curious to see what songs they will play. According to the details I got from friends, BraZealand is a 5-piece band featuring Brazilian and Kiwi musicians. They will perform a variety of Brazilian rhythms, including samba, bossa-nova, forro, baiao, coco e ciranda. Sounds like my kind of band :)

Caught up with several friends of mine whom I've not seen for awhile and even managed to dance some forro. The guys, Christian and Ramnish, got me dancing gafieira with them too :) I hope BraZealand will be playing their gigs regularly in Wellington - it would be nice to have a Brazilian band and a place in town to dance more forro and gafieira.

The evening was spent at Joel's flat where he had an ethnic cooking feast and friends over. I've not seen Joel since we met up when I first got back to NZ so went to see him in Northland tonight with my friend, Sergio. It was interesting being at Joel's place, talking to people mostly from the IT world but more so just being in a Kiwi party. I don't remember what a Kiwi party is like for I've almost always been to Latin-themed events. It was nice to do something different and was great to catch up with Joel :)

Sunday, 18th May 2008: Sam invited several of us from work to a potluck dinner at his place in Ngaio tonight. Sam and Anna lives in a nice house with their cat, Molly, and Priscilla and Francois were putting up the night at their place before taking off to France the next day. Not many of us were there - it was just Sam, Anna, Jeremy, Sheila, Luke and family, Priscilla, Francois and me. Anna made homemade baguette and this really fabulous kumara salad (Anna, you have to give me the recipe for it!) - yum! I'm sure she's a great cook - lucky Sam! And Ashvin's wife made a tasty Indian rice (Ashvin wasn't with us tonight but dropped off the food - how sweet of him!). Oh my, I ate too much! Food, glorious food...we should do potluck more often...hehe...

This was officially the final goodbye to Francois and Priscilla - have a great holiday back home and we'll see you again soon! Keep in touch :)


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