A Brats account of his first Reunion Experience - Michael HutchesonWhere does one begin? As a first timer to a reunion I must admit to not knowing what to expect. I wont make that mistake again!! Arriving Friday 7.30 am at Seednee airport with my wife, we made it through customs without the sheep that I smuggled in being detected. I was asked about the velcro gloves but explained that they were for a friend I had never met called Traci, who was picking us up from the airport and taking us to the Hotel! So we were sent on our merry way. After not finding anyone in the airport by that name my wife and I made the unanimious decission to get a taxi to the Hotel. (Traci missed us by 5 minutes we later found out.) Anyhoo, from the moment we arrived at the Hotel we found friendship at every turn. Mike Ellis offered his room for our bags until checkin at 2pm. We hung around the foyer for a couple of hours and met a number of other BRATS who I new by name but not by face. Bronwyn, Jonesy, Jo, LJ and hubby Brian, Candy and Glad, The Gee 3, a lass called Traci (hey simmo), Robyn, Colin the flag pole holder and soo many more. And also Peter Keene who I have known for 14 years from indoor cricket fame and never knew he was a BRAT.
Friday night at the Watershed was not my finest hour, after being awake for the beter part of 20 hours from travel, combined with more than just 1 pint of Tooheys Old. The venue was amazing with the Darling harbour night lights and the atmosphere of 50 plus drunks doing a great job of partying. I managed a 9pm finish before the fat lady sang me a solo tune.
Saturday was another day of sights and sounds of a beautiful city, the Rocks, Paddys markets, Pitt st and countless other places to spend the hard saved drinking money.
The main event rolled around all too soon with pre match entertainment in the Hotel ba-aa-aar before a short walk to the resuraunt. Cameras at every turn and not a single Asian holding one (funny considering the location). Well after an hour of what looked like a papparazzi convention,and the Ode in leiu of the wreath laying ceremony, we settled down to a six course meal ranging from the Peking Duck to the flied lise, prawns and Calamari. A slide show going on in the background made a few people choke on the odd morsul. I think Sandra Gee almost lost the lot when she saw herself in a school photo wearing the long socks with Roman sandals. What a statement that made.
The food side of the evening done, the music was turned up and the dancing began. Oh the humanity, such long forgotten moves such as the shuffle, the bus stop, The bump and other long forgotten mating dances were revived with much gustto and blushing of cheeks. Slow dances cheek to cheek to the strains of long forgotten love songs, wild head banging to newer more energetic rock anthems and general frenetic gyrating of body and waving of lims.
Jonesy and Robyn modeling the school uniforms while doing a rock and roll number was a definite moment that will stick in the memory banks. It just looked so....um......time warpish. The flash back was intense. Joking aside they did a brilliant number in what looked quite uncomfortable a situation. Tight shorts and a school smock that was almost a belt. Nice legs too, the pair of you!!
The evening was wound up with a rendition of Now is the hour-Haere Ra.
But wait, theres more!
No I here you say... but there is.
Not being satisfied with drinking the resturant dry of Tiger beer and upsetting the Crabs in the tanks, we now were still functioning made a b line for the pub that is across the road from the hotel. I think the poor publican had a minor corinary (at 24ish or so) when his quiet pub of four lonely hearts was swamped like a dockside nightclub by 40 or so very excitable and thirsty revellers at 1.30 am. (The boss will have liked the takings though.) His quiet easy shift was gutted. I made my way to bed about 3am ish knowing that we had a ferry to catch at 10am to Watsons Bay for yet another day of bread and water.
At breakfast which I extended from 7.30 to 9.30, I had to giggle at some of the differing degrees of hangover and the sunglasses club emerge from the lifts. Some of the more responsable BRATS got to bed after the pub closed at 6 am, only to emerge 3 hours later. Hats off to you for making the ferry for Watsons bay. Just to be different we spent the day talking and drinking about the night before, and saying goodbye to Brats making their way home to reality for another year.
A big thank you to The Sydney Dream team, Jo and all the Brats who put their time and effort into making this weekend a memorable and fantastic time. I have made friends with people I was friends with 30 years ago. I even have names on some photos now. My wife Mel cant stop talking about you lot and how much fun she has had.
Thank you one and all, and we will see you all in Christchurch 2006.
Beyond all Reason we will be Always and ever Together in our dreams of Singapore.