1 ALL FIRED UP
The Grill Sergeant will wake up on a boiling hot weekend and decide to have a spontaneous barbecue. ‘BBQ! Today! Mine!’ she will message everyone, and start googling recipes for meat rubs. The Grill Sergeant will unearth the barbecue from its usual home, draped in cobwebs underneath that rowing machine she never uses. Halfway through chipping off the rust and evacuating the colony of spiders, her phone will beep. Everyone is busy.
2 GARDEN OF DELIGHTS
Just two weeks and three Doodle Polls later, The Grill Sergeant will have her spontaneous barbecue. It will be cloudy. She will spend a long time untangling her fairy lights and put on a playlist called ‘Sunshine!!!’ to try to make up for the weather. The playlist will be limited to the greatest hits of Bob Marley, Graceland by Paul Simon and half an Ibiza ‘chill-out’ album from 2001.
3 MEAT FEAST
When people ask what to bring, The Grill Sergeant will reply ‘Nothing, just yourselves!’ She will end up asking every single person to pick up something on their way, as she is too busy massaging the five-spice pork belly. The Grill Sergeant will then skewer halloumi and marinate seitan for her friend’s vegan girlfriend. Later, the girlfriend will announce that she’s actually only a flexi-vegan, and
go to town on the Taste The Difference lamb koftas.
4 UP IN YOUR GRILL
The Grill Sergeant will tell people to drop by ‘from 3pm.’ This means they will all turn up at 6.30, except one weird guy from her office who she didn’t even realise was on the WhatsApp group. Weird Guy will then proceed to explain every single thing he knows about barbecues, and all the ways in which she is doing it wrong. Later he will take all the ice and peas out of her freezer to make room for a vodka-infused watermelon that only he will eat.
5 MALIBU BARBIE
In an effort to stick it to the patriarchy, The Grill Sergeant will insist she doesn’t need any help getting the barbecue going. It will immediately start drizzling. She will stand in a plastic poncho, blowing feebly on the hot coals for 45 minutes, yelling, “The pork belly won’t be much longer!” while everyone stands inside drinking and eating Kettle Chips. Eventually The Grill Sergeant will return to the house, proudly holding a plate of black sausages and charred chicken drumsticks. These will turn out to still be raw in the middle. Somebody will Deliveroo a takeaway.
6 SPIRITS WILL NOT BE DAMPENED
The rain will finally stop, and The Grill Sergeant will make everyone go back to the garden where she will light lots of tealights to make things feel summery and bohemian. Everyone will sit round shivering in hoodies, pretending to be excited about melting chocolate buttons inside a hot banana. After singeing off some knuckle hair in a small flambéed pineapple incident, The Grill Sergeant will decide it is safer to just drink the rum instead.
OH, THOSE SUMMER NIGHTS
Eventually, some time after 1am, everyone will leave. The Grill Sergeant will find herself alone surrounded by empty bottles, dirty paper plates, three tubs of coleslaw and approximately 372 bread rolls. She will suddenly remember the pork belly. It will be cooked to perfection.