Jilly Black’s 50th Party, 18 January 2015

Jilly inferred informality but some semblance of dress sense in her invitation, which was a non-electronic thing that came through the post in October but is now gone – hence my inability to state exactly where the party took place…

…update!! Jilly has subsequently sent me a copy of the invitation and some photos, so here is the invitation with the venue details, while I have subtly redacted Jilly’s personal contact details with a picture of Jilly:

I responded in October by e-mail:


I think your invitation infers that we’d need to be out of our minds to say yes, but we are quite crazy so we are coming to your party anyway.

Many thanks for inviting us and looking forward to seeing you on the day.

Lots of love

Ian (& pp Janie)

PS I’ll need to invest in a pair of gardening jeans in order genuinely to abstain from coming to the party in same.

Here is Jilly’s response to my response. I should make clear that I am not Jilly’s uncle, but Jilly has called me uncle pretty much since I met her, when I was about 16 and she was about 14:

Dear Uncle,

I was fairly confident you were mad enough to come when inviting you, so really glad I didn’t get that completely wrong, and that you are indeed coming. Excellent news.

You could also just wear any pear of jeans but sit in a muddy field in them beforehand (there are a few close to the hall) if you wanted that kind of look, but could you just let the mud dry before you arrive?


Look forward to seeing you.

Me xxx

Janie and I ended up sitting at table with several BBYO alumni, not least Sue Jacobs (Simon Jacob’s sister), who sat next to us and was excellent company. We talked cricket a lot, not least because one of Sue’s daughters is very keen. We also sat with some other people we hadn’t met before, who were also very good company. One or two of those people I think we had sort-of met before at one of Jilly’s house parties, but we got to know them better this time.

I’m sure Janie isn’t normally out of focus – she must have been violently agreeing with Sue, nodding her head at great speed…
…Sue, by contrast, looking very focused…
…while Jilly looks very happy, as well she should have done, hosting such a super party. Many thanks to Jilly for these pictures

It was also good to see Jilly’s sister Caroline (known to me as Frog) again. Also Jilly’s mum, who sadly has dementia now but is able to disguise it for a while.

It was less than a fortnight since my mum died and only a few days after the funeral, but actually it wouldn’t have occurred to me to miss this party. Indeed, from my point of view it proved to be a real tonic and Jilly seemed to be having a wonderful time with so many of her good friends around her in one go. It was a really jolly event, held in a rather quaint village hall, with a very informal atmosphere and lots of nice people.

Update: Jilly has now kindly added details, such as exactly where the party was held, otherwise that type of detail might easily have got lost in the mists of Ogbloggy-foggy-time.

Jilly is also questioning some of my above details, such as exactly how old we must have been when we first met, but that is subject matter for further discussion and future Ogblog postings!

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