May Days

What to write about on the 3rd May? Birthday parties, happy families or Leicester City?

The period around ‘our’ birthdays in April and May is always tinged with sadness relating to the death of my Dad on the 24th May but I am saving up my thoughts for a post in his memory later in the month. Suffice for now to say that I think he would have enjoyed the family weekend we just had, so read on for a cheerful tale of the merry month of May even when it is only a few days old.

First up then, Happy Birthday for yesterday to my brother Dave and congratulations to Leicester City on securing the Premier League title last night. Writing this from down town Leicester in our offices at De Montfort University seems entirely appropriate for both celebrations since Dave studied here 20+ years ago. Pretty sure we both agree that if MCFC were not destined to be title contenders this season then Leicester would be our second choice, just like the whole country with perhaps the exception of the Spurs fans. I am very happy for my adopted city and Dave’s alma mater and today has been a joy to be here amid celebrating Leicester fans, see you in Europe next season, I hope!

Tomorrow marks the 70th birthday of the much loved daughter of Edith and Bill Wilson, also known as Mum, Grandma and June Coe. With her birthday falling on a Wednesday we had to celebrate in advance and so the clan converged on sleepy Filey & Hunmanby, North Yorkshire. The much lauded pies of the Piebald Inn were destined to be the main food course for a Las Vegas themed party that included Roulette and card games and a drink or two.

Now the Las Vegas theme was really just the cover story, after much consideration of what to do as a celebration of Mum’s 70th we had decided to book a personal appearance by The King himself Mr Elvis Aaron Presley. I tried to find his phone number but he appeared to have rather inconveniently popped his rhinestone studded clogs 40 years ago.

So an Elvis Tribute Artist (an ETA to those of us who know about the booking of live music artistes) was needed. Conveniently for us, every year sees nearby Bridlington host the UK’s biggest and best ETA competition over the May Day bank holiday weekend so Elvis P1020103would be everywhere and “in the county” so this would be an easy thing to arrange a low key attendance of Elvis to sing Happy Birthday. Every year that is, except this year.

So with Plan B in tatters (whatever happened to him after he defamed Strickland Banks?) we needed a plan C and fortunately Google did not disappoint us. For the exchange of a modest sum of folding paper we had a full on ETA booked complete with lights and music to perform after dinner at the Piebald Inn. So it was a very warm welcome to Hunmanby for Mr Ray Wood, aka Elvis On Tour.

Arriving late for the set up and sound check was not good for my blood pressure but all was done on time and we just about kept the secret right up to show time. Elvis strutted his stuff and sang Happy Birthday as well as all his usual stuff and I think everyone had a great time. Young and slightly older all danced the night away or just kicked back and enjoyed the show.

It seemed like a crazy thing to be organising but life is short, milestone birthdays are reasons to celebrate and in our busy lives we need to take time to do things together and especially things outside what may be seen as normal. I would urge anyone who has read this through to the end to please, please, please just do something, anything, that others will see as a bit cuckoo but will bring a smile to the faces of the people you love. I don’t do religion but trust me, I know my Dad will live forever in the hearts and minds of everyone who’s lives he touched, Dave and I organising this ‘crazy’ party in honour of our Mum was 100% down to the example set by Mr. Tony Coe RIP.

Happy Birthday Mum xxx



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