Soooo the cat is thankfully out of the bag. Our Helen, who’s twenty-one today – twenty-one! I feel ancient – thought she was going for a meal with la famille last night but in fact it was a proper party with the whole gang present. She genuinely didn’t have a clue, which worries me, because I basically mentioned it to her face about a thousand times.
As is my wont, I have penned a blog in honour of the proceedings. Our Paul read it out last night at the party because I was too much of a wimp to do so. Sorry Helen. Here goes…:
“I remember the day you were born vividly. It was a Pancake Tuesday and I was minding my own business in the school hall with the rest of my class when I spotted Mad Tam and his gravity defying hair pacing by the secretary’s office. Turns out he’d come to pick me and Maria up early so we could see you for the very first time. Mother Goose looked shattered but proud as could be and I was happy with the situation because the sister I already had was sound, so I was willing to add to the collection.
Unfortunately, all memories of you from that point up until you were about thirteen are hazy. Indeed, save for some photographs of you peering out from underneath your increasingly mental fringe, and the memory of you finally being persuaded to swap your dummy for a Tamagotchi when you were about twelve, I’d strongly refute that you lived with us at all.
This all changed when you took the lead part in Bugsy Malone. This was notable for your comedy dancing and the closing rendition of “You Give A Little Love”, which still brings a lump to the throat every time I think about it. After that we couldn’t shut you up, from the Harmonettes and the glorious summer of Liverpool’s Got Talent, to developing a ruthlessly organised streak, there was no stopping you! Amongst many other things, you almost singlehandedly organised the Bridges’ wedding, and, by all accounts, ran the show in Broughton Hall for a year. You’re a force to be reckoned with – in a good way!
Keep going at LIPA – you’re over halfway there now and it’ll be worth it if only to shake Paul McCartney’s hand at the end of it. Thanks for being kind even when I haven’t been, and for being our Paul’s second mum, and for your cleaning skills, and for the open door policy on your wardrobe. Sorry about the fact that I still haven’t taken you to Paris yet like I said I would when you were fourteen and I was twenty-one – I am well aware of the fact that now you’re twenty-one and we still haven’t been! Stick with that David one – he’s a legend and most definitely your lobster. Most importantly, keep on smiling and keep on singing. To loosely paraphrase Bugsy, you could be anything that you want to be.”
Just a little footnote to the above – tragically for you, people say that we look very much alike. Thankfully, that’s where the similarity ends; indeed, I’d quite like to be like you when I eventually grow up. You are one of my best friends and I hope you have the most amazing birthday. I’ll take you to Paris one day…