When I had my 21st birthday party I asked Paddy, Anje, my sister and my dad to speak.
My father went first and decided to do things very differently. Instead of trying to give me advice, he merely repeated a couple life lessons that he has hammered into me. I think this was done to see if I had understood those lessons and to see how I reacted and if I could repeat the lessons. Done.
Anje & my sister both gave awesome heart felt speeches that really touched me, but then the following peach came from Paddy. I have been looking for this piece of paper for months and finally found it today – 5 months later.
Here it is:
“Some of you already know this but I’ve known James for about 19 years. In the more recent of these our friendship has been James dragging me kicking and screaming out of trouble and in general just looking out for me.
While I am truly grateful for you doing this, I also can’t help but blame you for having to do it. You see, while today he plays the role of gentleman and I the hooligan, when we were young the roles were very much reversed. I just have a bit of a story about that to tell you.
When we were young I was at James’ house and he had a guava tree in his back garden. One day when they were quite ripe we decided it would be an awesome idea and collect all of them. We then decided to go up onto the balcony and through them onto the neighbours roof rapidly making a massive mess. After we had received our respective hidings and had gone outside we sat on the step in silence for a bit. The first words that came out of James’ mouth were, “That wasn’t so bad. What do we throw next?”
James, for the man who complains about every ache and pain.”
~Growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional. ~
What an absolute legend. That is what I wanted for a speech. Paddy bringing his view point of being my friend and sharing an experience that no one else had shared but us that went waaaaay back. Hopefully I am as lucky to get to speak at your 21 bud.