nothing quite spells tahiti like U-N-E-X-P-E-C-T-E-D. Always.

3:17 AM

Expecting the unexpected was our anthem in Tahiti.  To be more specific, we learned quickly to expect the unexpected at dinner parties.  We had lots of those.  Nothing quite reminds me of good times in Tahiti like my mom stressing over a dinner with an undetermined amount of people.  Plus lots of dish-washing.  And unexpected stuff, since I already said that.

Due to our church's Semi-annual General Conference, almost every church member who ever served a mission had a "reunion" of sorts last weekend (aka I-15 was even worse than usual Friday night.  That+BYU Football=gridlock).  Those who served in Tahiti-Papeete were no exception.  But I must be honest, that reunion is tons cooler than any of y'alls.  Because people who served more than five years ago actually keep coming.   And there's always great food.  It's a party like only Polynesians know how.  

But, like I said, things always go a little differently than originally planned.  

Basically, long story short, my sister and I brought up most of the food.  There were two BIG. HEAVY. pots of pork.  I'm, like, pretty strong or whatever, but the trip from the car to the kitchen proved to be very strenuous on my poor, pinched fingers - and lifting it onto the countertop was even worse.  My luck had worn out, and I spilled grease ALL. OVER. ME.

Sad days.  I'm sorry, candy cane tank.  You got super gross.

Let me also just briefly add that I was super stressed about missing the football game.  So getting tons of grease on my top didn't put me in the best mood ever (sorry, Mom).  Yes, a primary life stress is BYU football.  It's cool.

So I was cleaning up (or attempting to).  Not one minute later, my heroics for lifting the darn pot o' pork onto the countertop were rendered null as the entire thing fell to the ground while the portable island was being moved.  (Not to point fingers, but this was TOTALLY not my fault.  I just needed to say that).  And when I say fall, I mean gravity kinda shoved it into the ground.  Like, it broke.  And then... grease went everywhere on the floor.  Along with a bunch of the meat.  

[Broken lid]
It was extremely comical.  Things... couldn't have started much worse for our soirée.

Except for my shirt, things ended working out just fine.  The evening was a success (and the food was fine, the pork salvaged and warm).  I saw some dear friends that I had not seen in a few years.  I got to speak some French.  Bisous all around (not my favorite still).  I even saw some Tahitian families that I was not expecting to be reunited with at all.

I love Tahiti.

I just think it is so funny how, even back in America, these things still come back like we had never left.  It just seemed like it were zone conferences all over again - carrying in the boxes of serving spoons, setting up the tables, eating last or not at all.  It's all about the unexpected, but it's a familiar road.  We have had many dinners where we were literally feeding the 5000 because relatives just kept showing up [luckily this was not the case at this event].  We've also had dinners where we've had leftovers for two weeks.  We've had high-stakes dinners with general authorities where we were literally preparing all day long... two days before.  We've had our fair share of food problems because our oven was a devil.  I couldn't help like feel that the reunion wouldn't be complete without a little panic.

Pretty sure my mom rejoiced greatly Saturday night once this was off her shoulders.  But she did a great job.  A faa'ito'ito noa! 

p.s. BYU won, not that that's new.  I had a new spring in my step while I washed the dishes.  

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