What might have been an otherwise average party was elevated to true magnificence by my wonderful family and friends. This was a true triumph.
An ambitious plan and extended guest list (although maybe not quite so large as the Festival of the Horn 2008, due to numerous cancellations and assorted complications) made things challenging, but our experience in arranging Bar Äijä’s parties really paid off.
Where to start?
The weather was glorious. We’d made a lot of arrangements and thrown a lot into the catering – burritos and fillings for 50 people, give or take – but there was still a ton to do on the day. Tents up, tables and chairs set out, and so on. But that’s just boring logistics.
A couple of days before the party, I joked to my traditionally-unlucky-at-hunting lanttumies that while we technically had food for all, it would be great if he shot us a roe deer to roast up. He said he’d do it Thursday. And he did.
 No, it’s lanttumies.
So we had a roe buck on a spit to add to our burrito feast.
Oh fuck yes.
The crowd was excellent as ever, drinks flowed freely, and the food was perfectly done. Special kudos, aside from the Hunting God Vuta, must go to Linza for cooking up and seasoning the burrito mince. And of course Mrs. Hatboy for dealing with basically everything else, from the veggies to the general socialising while I was stuck behind the bar tending to the usual crowd of Bar Äijä’s barflies.
 I assume he kept the deer’s head and horns for which this report is named, which is only fair: it arrived at our house headless.
It was excellent to see so many old faces reprising their roles from my 30th birthday. Mr. Fahrenheit, DJ Kalakukkos (his work of art of a birthday card, with essential additions by Anu-Riikka, was a thing to behold), Pia, and of course the indispensable Lars. Brendan turned up with Jenny to represent the Old Guard, which was brilliant. And many others, newcomers over the past ten years as well as Festival of the Horn alumni, who I have neglected to mention.
It was of course grand to see Mr. dreameling again (a far too infrequent guest), and his inadvertent invention of the Triggered Snowflake (Bailey’s Irish cream, Malibu coconut liqueur, strawberry ice cream liqueur of questionable age and provenance, and milk) was highly entertaining. His accidental White Russianing of Heikki’s crotch is one of many things I’m sorry I missed.
More kudos must also go to Kristiina, who worked hard until about 01:30am to read and deliver editorial notes on The First Feast by deadline. She didn’t need to do it, but she did it.
I also want to thank everyone who pitched in for my Gigantti gift card, my Fantasiapelit gift card and – at last – my Nintendo Switch and Zelda: Breath of the Wild. I’ve wanted a Zelda setup of my very own for so many years, now I have closure on it I’m not sure what I’m going to do. Play, I guess. At least now my ridiculous collection of Zelda merchandise is accompanied by an actual game.
All in all, a grand night was had by all. I understand Mrs. BRKN in particular had a good time even though I rarely saw her in the bar. I think she was getting her wine from an outside bag, it was hard to keep track with such a widespread party area. Still, she didn’t drink the skull-full of gin and a dash of tonic I made for her (even more Russian than the five or six Extremely Russian White Russians I made for Heikki), so that was probably for the best.
Great night. I’ll make another report with some additional photos soon. Until then, thank you all for simply being.