Its The Time To Party

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Its The Time To Party
Its saturday night and you want to party. You dont have time but you want to throw the best party in town. All you need to do is to keep in mind a few details and your just-in-minutes party can look like a well-planned celebration.
With friends, sometimes the best parties are the impromptu ones that you organize over the phone on your way back from work. Frantic phone calls for flowers, drinks, food... that has an energy all its own and those parties are always fun.

But of course, there are times when you need to throw a less casual party, and depending on what kind of people you need to invite, and what your motivation is, youll have to follow a different approach.

If youre throwing the party at home, play with the things you have at home. For instance, you can create a souk-like effect simply by scattering a mix of knick-knacks, rugs, dhurries, cushions and so on that you already have, around the space you plan to use. Use candlelight or low lighting instead of powerful lights, and there you are! Even if no one notices that this is supposed to be a souk, the feel exists-and youll have had fun doing it. And thats what matters. Because its only when the host is having a good time, the guests can also have a good time.

If you must throw a show-off party, though, youve got to start your planning two weeks to a month in advance. Theres a reason for this. For a show-off party, you need a well-known DJ, and DJs tend to be booked much in advance. Youll need the right bartender, exotic flowers, food thats a little out of the ordinary, ambience... it all depends on the amount of detail you want to go into, and the more detail you go into, the more special your guests will feel. People in Mumbai have seen it all and done it all, so if you really want to make an impact, you have to put in a lot of effort... Even if its just to make it look like you did nothing special for this party. That this is how you usually live!

For me, the visual is very important: the food, the drink, and the entire set-up. A party is a bit like a theatre production. You have to transport your guests and that you can do by creating a happy space, full of energy that will make them want to be part of it. You have to create wow. And actually, a party is theatre. You dress up in the evening, you turn yourself into a goddess or prince, you relax so youre not your every-day, hassled self. And thatll make everyone else unwind too.

When youre planning your party, keep the senses in mind. The place needs to smell nice. Stale air will ruin everything. It needs to be temperature-controlled so it isnt too hot or too cold. Texture is important. Your guests will touch the upholstery; their shoes will touch the ground. And at an outdoor party, thats important because, remember, the women will be in delicate high heels. Are you going to let them stumble about among grass and hillocks? You need to provide some sort of carpeting or path, so that they dont trip or feel uneasy, so that it doesnt occur to them not to enjoy the party. And of course, you have to provide an overall sense of drama. There needs to be a sense of tamasha.

Sometimes, when you throw a large party that includes people youre not intimately associated with, you may need a few people around just to work the crowd. Just to show them how to chill out. People arent very good at chilling out these days, but whatever kind of party it is, a party is meant to be fun. Sometimes you have to show them the way.

So enjoy your party-but never overlook these essentials:

Food:
Its fabulous to see smoked salmon on the menu. Its very visual. But most people will only have one piece, at most two. You have to give people what they like. You cant fill your stomach with blue cheese and Parma ham. People want food theyre familiar with.

Power:
You must have a power backup of some sort, because face it. If theres a power overload or outage, which could well happen because of all the lights, sound, air-conditioning and so on, then your party is over. Either have an electrician on call, or make sure you have a functioning generator that can take the full load.

Safety:
Ninety-nine per cent of the time, nothing awful will happen, but you must be prepared for that one per cent possibility of problems. Because this is a party and people will be drunk. They might fall; a cigarette might start a fire... Always keep a small fire extinguisher handy and a first-aid kit.

Catering:
You could sign on the happening caterer in town, the one who makes the best Prawns Koliwada, but have you asked the caterer the relevant questions? Like, how fresh are the prawns, and what kind of refrigeration do you use? Have you checked for yourself the expiry dates on the cans of caviar and smoked salmon? Food poisoning cases keep happening, but if youre careful you can make sure you and your guests are safe.

Seating:
Chairs with straight backs will always put off the young, because they seem too formal. And if you have got older people at your party, its a good idea to make sure that all your seating isnt very low, because older people are not comfortable trying to get down and get up. Even if you have everything right but your seating, if youve made someone uncomfortable, then youve failed.
Posted by: Simran Kaur Sohal Post your comments Post your Comments
Posted on : 31/10/2005
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