The day after doing tequila shots the Swiss way - with cinnamon and segments of orange in place of the eye-watering salt and lemon, for a more warming, Autumnal twist - I indulged in a Surrealist Feast.
A cracker full of anatomical accessories kicked off proceedings, sprinkling the table with 'taches, glasses, noses, toothy gumguards, giant sequins and jokes. A balloon crown was bestowed on the birthday girl, and bunches of bright helium were attached to each wrist. She was given no choice but to weigh herself down with cheesy nachos, fries, filled potato skins, and a whole rack of ribs. This was the counter-attack on balloon elevation. There was no excuse for the rest of us...
Straws slopped out of Marguerita tumblers, 'taches wandered creatively over rosy faces, forming monobrows and mutton chop sideburns, eyes were made large by absurdly round specs (all the better for reading literary lesbian porn, whilst chomping on chips), and spider-leg eyelashes crawled their way over the thick black rims. Diners transformed into Professor Trelawney, Geography teachers, and seventies Glam-Rockers.
'Happy Birthday' was sped up and confusingly altered, so we sang our own tunes whilst the cake was punctured with fireworks before being sprinkled with cocoa-coloured ash. I spooned around the carbon and chemicals... A lone balloon weaved its way through those feasting, held at eye level by a levitating nose. 'I was never very good at chemistry', he said.
A slurp or seven of Oreo milkshake later, and the revellers departed. 'I'm mad, me' was emblazoned across the flushed face of the one wearing a mane of silver strands atop her disco-destined head. A flash-forward to her middle-age, and madcap antics when alone with her cats.
To ease full stomachs, by lightening the load, balloons were launched outside, into the lights of Leicester Square and far, far away. We followed them to the second star on the right, and straight on to mourning the end of a Surrealist Feast.