The hill may be in sight, though I’m not over it just yet

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On Tuesday I reached the grand old age of 36. Before you say it - the hill may be in sight, though I’m not yet over it.

To prove I can still stick the pace I indulged in some pints of strong lager on Saturday evening then managed to get up the following morning to play football, netting two goals in the process. To say I suffered from my extra-curricular excursions on Sunday afternoon was an understatement.

We went down to my in-laws for a birthday/Sunday lunch and having consumed my own weight in silverside beef I felt decidedly sleepy.

After the meal we retired to the living room where we watched Room on the Broom at Lucy’s request. As I sat on the couch I battled to keep my eyes open, each blink lasting longer than the last as I teetered on the cusp of nodding off. I fought the urge resolutely given that falling asleep in front of my wife, her parents, my daughter and my son would be the source of much ridicule.

I chanced a look over at my father-in-law to see if he’d noticed I was struggling to stay awake and was both pleased and pardoned to see that he was fast asleep himself.

Not wanting to cause unnecessary embarrassment to him I chose not to mention it at the time, instead taking a mental note of the anecdote to use at a later date, perhaps in a newspaper column.

I got a number of interesting cards for my birthday including one which contained an ode to breaking wind.

It was very appropriate given that just last week I’d let rip in front of Lucy to see how she’d react.

My daughter is fast developing her own little personality and just to keep her on her toes I like to introduce her to new sights, sounds and smells.

This particular experiment backfired both literally and figuratively. Upon hearing my parp she immediately went to fetch me a nappy.

On Monday evening when I came home from work I was greeted with the sweetest of sounds. As soon as I walked into the living room Lucy greeted me with the words, ‘Happy birthday, daddy’. She’d been rehearsing all day and her pitch and pronunciation were perfect.

I was so happy I couldn’t bring myself to let her down by telling her she was a day early.

Cheeky reminder of a departing

work colleague

The Lurgan Mail lost one of its longest serving members of staff last week when Louise Gordon left for pastures new.

A seasoned ad rep, Louise had the patter that meant she could sell ice-pops to the Inuits. More importantly she provided a source of light relief in the office. Occasionally we laughed with her, but more regularly at her.

I’ll never forget the day she came into work having fallen asleep during a sunbed session and burnt her backside. She got torrents of stick about it from everybody in the office including some people who had just called in to place classified ads.

She ended up so embarrassed about the whole incident that she went home with not one, but two, sets of red cheeks.

I hope Louise will forgive me for reminding people of her burnt buns, but if I know her like I think I do, she’ll be willing to turn the other cheek.