My brother was standing in my grandparent's house on Saturday afternoon, speaking with my grandmother. She had just asked him how I was doing, and he replied that he didn't really know, he hadn't spoken to me in awhile. Just then, his phone rang- and there I was on the other end of the line. I said "Hi!" and he said "Hold on" and passed the phone to my grandmother.
I had almost called earlier in the week, and I'm totally glad I didn't because I would have let the cat out of the bag. I had the receiver in hand when it dawned on me that maybe the whole party was a surprise thing. As it was, I thought, in speaking with my grandma, I was mistaken. My grandmother explained that my father and uncle and their girlfriends and all the grandkids (3) and their wives or fiancees (2) and babies (1) were there, and they were all going to have a nice quiet celebratory dinner in a few minutes. I was surprised, and was a little relieved I hadn't begged the time off work and flown back for a few days to join in a crappy Chinese buffet dinner in my grandparent's little town.
But I really thought someone had told me there was going to be a party?!?!
I got the story last night, and it indeed was a party. I hope someone snapped pics of my grandparents as they walked into a hall and froze when confronted with about a hundred guests waiting for them. My cousin said he'd never seen my grandmother look so pissed off. Ever. (And that woman has mastered looking - as she would describe it - "cross!") Granted, she had repeatedly said she did not want a big fuss made over this milestone. As a matter of fact, she joked to me on the phone, "Ohhh, we'll get divorced tomorrow, maybe!"
In addition to all the celebrants in attendance, plaques were presented from the Governor General, the Prime Minister, the Bishop, and the (frickin!) POPE!
And I didn't even send a card!
I'm really, such an asshole!
Despite that, and the fact that they'll never read this, let it be known I send my general sincere congratulations and love out up into the universe where it will float, much like the hwang-sa, far far away and land gently upon their lovely heads.