American Independence Day Celebration
JULY 4th 2015
Earlier in the year our family holiday to Cyprus was booked for 2 weeks from the 29th June 2015 - 13th July 2015, but as we got closer to the departure date, there were many enquiries for work during the same period.
It got to the stage that I decided (regretfully) to rearrange my return flight to the UK and to leave my family and the gorgeous island of Cyprus after a few days to ensure that I was back to work. I booked a flight that would get me back to Gatwick at 1.35am on Friday 3rd July 2015.
At the beginning of June, I received a phone call … … …
"Hello can I help you?"
"Yes, is that Zap The Fantastic Magician?"
"Yes that would be me alright"
"Are you free on the evening of Saturday 4th July 2015"
"As it goes, I am free on that day"
"We are having an American Independence Day party and we would love you to come and perform for us"
“No problem, can you give me some more details please?”
"Yes, we need you to perform at our house in Miami. We would like you to perform during reception & dinner, then we would like Marc Paul the amazing MindReadr to perform after dinner”
“Wow. If you can sort out the flights then we are in business"
I put the phone down and wondered if this was the best event I had ever been asked to perform at?
A few emails were exchanged, and sure enough business class tickets were arranged for us departing at 14.15 from Heathrow terminal 5.
As we got closer to the date, Marc Paul, he asked me if I had my ESTA application approved, otherwise I would NOT be allowed into the USA.
Marc Paul is a seasoned traveller because of all the cruises that he performs on and he explained that International travellers who are seeking to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) are now subject to enhanced security requirements and will be required to pay an administrative fee.
Admin costs for new return tickets from Cyprus sorted. ESTA application was approved & fee sorted. Meet and Greet parking sorted at Gatwick to minimise hassle at Gatwick. Pod car parking arranged at Heathrow terminal 5 sorted.
Phew.... I will definitely need a holiday after all this!
Cyprus get ready, the Tsaparelli Clan are coming – Yahoooo!
Monday 29th June - Leaving home at around 5.00am. Ugh!
Holiday in Cyprus with the Family. Hooray!
Picture the scene now.
It's Thursday night on the 2nd July and I was taken to Paphos airport. the flight back was delayed by a couple of hours.
Panic stations again .... .... A few more grey hairs grew on my head. I had just enough time to get home from Gatwick get washed up, then drive to Heathrow. I prayed to all the Gods of all different religions, and we eventually took off.
Nothing else can possibly go wrong.
We landed ... ... where was the Meet and Greet man with my car? He got a mouthful I can assure you. I was almost in tears. The stress of everything got to me, but he arrived after about 30mins.
I got home and I was absolutely knackered. I still a little bit of time in hand, but I figured that I should set off as quickly as possible just in case I fell asleep !
Surely nothing else can possibly go wrong now. How wrong was I ? I forget to include the "God of Traffic Jams" in my prayers, so he came on me with a vengeance. The M25 was like a massive Car Park
We were at a standstill. I had just flown back 2000 miles, ready to take on another 4000 miles to go to a party of a lifetime and that bitch of an M25 really got to me. I had to be at heathrow by 12.15.
Thank God for the "TomTom Sat Nav". I was directed out of the congested area and I caught up with Marc Paul in the BA Lounge at around 1.15pm.
We got onto the plane, tucked myself into my fully extendable seat. I watched a movie, had a fabulous lunch, and then I fell fast asleep.
This is definitely the way to travel.Beton Imprime
The next thing I knew, we were landing in Miami.
A lovely man called Christian De Guzman was our designated driver for the weekend who picked us up and took us to our hotel in an area near Hobe Sound. It was a 2 hour drive!
The following morning we had breakfast did a bit of shopping and prepared for the evening performance.
The next day, Christian picked us up at the agreed time and we drove to Jupiter Island.
WOW! what an amazing place.
Who lives here? Well two of the most well known celebrities are Tiger Woods and Celine Dion
During reception, it was planned that I walked into the house using a side entrance and I was playing at being a bit of an eccentric character wandering around who was taking photos and generally being obnoxious. I was telling them that I was there because I thought it was a theme park.They even took photos of me. It was hilarious !
There were midges flying around and after spluttering a bit, I coughed out a massive spider ( plastic of course ) and it was just brilliant to watch everybodies face. They were just short of calling the police to take me out. At this point we could all relax. The pressure was off. Now we were getting on to the serious business of performing the inimitable Zap style of magic during dinner.
Did I tell you that there were only 10 guests?Beton Imprime
The biggest illusion of the evening was to perform whilst we were all floating on water. Yes thats right. the whole party took place in the middle of a swimming pool. This has to be my most memorable performance ever.
After dinner we all went into the house, where Marc Paul performed his very slick Mind Reading act. He absolutely smashed it.
The venue, the decorations, the food, the magic and whole operation was very slick and between us, the whole event was memorable, engaging, intriguing, entertaining.
Massive respect to the lady who made all this possible and for treating us so magnificently. There are plans to make a bigger and better party next year, so watch this space.
Christian drove us back to the hotel that evening where we where buzzing from the experience. So a massive thank you to him for the little bit of sight seeing, lunch at a restaurant on Oceans drive then back to the airport for a business flight back to the UK in my fabulous fully reclining seats.
What an action packed weekend.
During this adventure, I travelled about 10,000 miles, so I am looking forward to using the air miles with the family.