Long time lurker, first time poster. With Halloween creeping upon us, please let my tale of woe, serve as a tale of caution for you pumpkin artisans. MODS please move if in wrong folder. Less etiquette question, more of funny story.
DH, DD and I host an annual pumpkin carving party for our friends and neighbors. We all have to carve pumpkins, might as well have some fun while doing it; food, drink, prizes (seasonal spirits for the adults, gift cards for the kids) and a bonfire if weather permits.
SS and I have been friends for roughly 15 years. We had had a falling out where communication ceased for about two years, but then she extended the olive branch of peace after a mutual friend’s (my BFF) father passed away unexpectedly. We talked. We resolved our issues. Life goes on. As a side note, SS does have a history of snowflakish behavior. There are times that she says or does something that leaves you going “wait…what?”
Last year, our pumpkin carving party coincided with a trip SS had planned to visit her DH (HDH) older brother. SS and family are not local; they live about five hours away. Her BIL and SIL live here. SS asked if they could come to the party, and could they stay with us as SS doesn’t get along with her BIL and SIL. DH and I talked it over. We figured sure, why not. The kids can hang out and it’ll give the adults more time to visit.
SS, HDH and HDS arrive Friday night as scheduled. Apart from a few issues at dinner (no allergies, SS and HDS are just notoriously picky eaters, SS even admits that herself) everything went well. There were a few bumps on Saturday with SS and HDS while we were preparing for the party, but the coup de grace really took place Sunday morning.
Our guests arrive Saturday evening. The competition (at least amongst the adults) is fierce. This is our seventh year so we have some rivalry (good-natured) going on. We’re eating and drinking. People are enjoying themselves. Meanwhile, SS really wants to roast pumpkin seeds, and she’s fairly persistent about it as she’s going from table to table asking people for their seeds. I pull her aside and tell her she has to wait until the contest is over, as several people are using the “guts” as part of the design. Miffed, SS stops her pursuit of pumpkin seeds for the moment.
The contestants line up for judging and prizes are awarded. We light the bonfire. The kids all scatter for epic games of flashlight tag and ghost in the graveyard. SS descends on the tables, gets her pumpkin seeds and disappears inside, returning about 45 minutes later with her roasted seeds. All is right with the world, or so I thought.
Sunday morning, SS, HDH and HDS get up early to pack and meet their family for church and brunch before making the long drive home. As they are about to leave, SS turns to me and says, “Oh, by the way, your laundry flooded last night.” Wait…what??? We go downstairs, sure enough, the main floor drain had overflowed, flooding the laundry room floor and spilling over into the family room. SS said she had seen kids in the laundry room the night before and “hypothesizes” (her words, not mine) they must have been screwing around and caused the flooding.
After they leave, DH pries the drain cover off; the drain is clogged with pumpkin pulp and seeds. We figured SS dumped the guts of approximately seventeen pumpkins down the garbage disposal. DH did what he could with the wet-vac and our “drain snake” but we did have to schedule a plumber for the next day. When SS found out what had happened, she released a series of panicked text messages, and tried to call my cell phone no less than twelve times. Eventually, I did speak to her Monday night to which I received “Wow. That sucks. Good thing you have savings.” No apology. No nothing.
For the next few weeks I found pumpkin seeds in the damnedest places throughout the kitchen; in the center island cupboards and drawers, in the oven drawer, in the drawers adjacent to the oven. Like I said, there were several other faux pas and bumps throughout the weekend, but this one by far was the most egregious and costly.
Carve with care, people. Carve with care.