|Joy in Ramsbottom in 1962, Athena in London in 2015
Happy Birthday Joy Josephine, who migrated to Western Australia 51 years ago and on Sunday June 7 reaches the milestone of 72 years on planet earth.
And Happy Birthday to my best friend’s first granddaughter Athena, who was born in norf London on June 4.
An Anglo Greek, Athena weighed in at 10lb 5oz arriving with the stature of a toddler.
Mummy Caroline migrated to Greece a few years ago, and with Costa produced this beautiful baby girl (I would have called her Venus, but that’s another story).
Appropriately Athena was born at the Whittington hospital, close to the spiritual home of Greek Londoners, the Arsenal.
You will have met mummy Caroline at at our wedding. She recounts how John asked her at the wedding if she was a Christian. She is, despite being bullied in earlier years by elements of the established church. As an aside she’s not the only innocent I know to have been persecuted by those who have manipulated their way into positions of influence in every denomination of every religion.
Summer has finally sprung here in the UK.
The trees are flowering, and our female cat Minnie is bringing home little bunnies, which we try to save, usually successfully. But there’s the occasional, unsavoury decapitation. Such is life on planet earth in the season of new life. Minnie, as female is the family predator.
It’s interesting that the household cat has played such an important role in our world.
One of the most remembered felines is Dick Whittington’s cat, who accompanied his owner to London in the late 14th century, and was with him when a few years later when, on the site of the Whittington hospital Richard heard the Bow Bells of London, singing
“Turn again, Whittington, Once Lord Mayor of London!
Turn again, Whittington, Twice Lord Mayor of London!
Turn again, Whittington, Thrice Lord Mayor of London!”
Richard Whittington decided to return to London, made his fortune, became 3 times
Lord Mayor of London, and left his fortune to fund philanthropic projects to help the poor.
An exceptional man.
Not the self satisfying scum that David Cameron and George Osborne came from.
An exceptional cat, with a statue now adorning North Hill.
72 years is certainly a landmark to celebrate.
Humans live longer and longer.
And the chances are that baby Athena is will live to the year 2000!
The average lifespan for all Australians is currently 82 years and 10 months.
Had Joy stayed in the UK her life expectancy would have been 81, but as an Australian woman she should expect to tread this mortal coil until she’s 85.
82 year old Joan Collins famously said “Age is just a number. It’s totally irrelevant unless, of course, you happen to be a bottle of wine.”
Jesus lived until his early thirties.
But he packed one heck of a lot into those years.
He punched above his weight by the age/achievement definition.
You, Joy are an amazing matriarch.
The moving spirit of a loving group of people who care for the sick in the family.
Love you, you 72 year old.
When you were much, much younger I used to sneak into your bedroom and open your clothes drawers!
Because there you stored costumes from the pantomimes you played in.
What always took my childish fancy was the costumes of ghosts
And trying them on in front of your mirror took me to the surreal world of pantomime, which you were a part of.
Whether you ever played in the pantomime Dick Whittington and his cat I don’t know, but a better person I can’t imagine ever existed than Richard Whittington.
I attach a booklet penned by good friend, retired priest Kevin Logan, a splendiferous chap, which has just popped up in my inbox.
I haven’t read it yet but knowing Kevin it’ll be a forthright, spiritual, loving thesis.
I remember him once climbing a supermarket flagpole to protest against Sunday shopping.
Was he right?
I think on balance we would benefit from a break in 24×7 trading.
His book is available from Amazon:
From it’s title it’s the most important question in the world.
Happy birthday my love.