Things were a bit quiet in the center of Fremantle last night - except in a private function area at Rosie O'Grady's Irish Pub where Jill and I and about 50 friends and relatives of our second daughter Peta gathered to put to rest any rumor that she hadn't yet reached 21. Below is a picture of the three of us pretending to be barflies.
I was later called upon to make a speech to the assembled multitude and fortunately had received enough warning to prepare a few cryptic notes to jog my memory:
Our beautiful daughter was born in 1991, the year Paul Keating deposed Bob Hawke to become Prime Minister. It was also the year for the public beginning of the World Wide Web. There were no iPads or iPhones in those days. (Gasps of shock.) Blockbuster movies in 1991 were Hook, Ninja Turtles II and Terminator II. As I recall, her older brothers and sister were very big on Ninja Turtles. Nominees for Best Picture in the 1991 Academy Awards included Silence of the Lambs and the Disney cartoon feature Beauty & The Beast. I still haven't watched either movie because they were too scary.
Peta has always had a bubbly personality. She particularly enjoyed playing mud pies as a baby, then went on to become a pretty good chocolate cake cook. At school she distinguished herself as a champion athlete, with an emphasis on running, and also as a trombonist with the Melville High School bands.
She was an East Fremantle Sea Scout at progressive levels for eight years. When a young adult she put in some time as a volunteer Cub Scout leader. In her teen years she was also a fearless Army Cadet - during which time she was part of a group which voyaged in very rough weather from Fremantle to Tasmania, then to Sydney on an RAN warship. I also remember watching her abseil from the top of the Police headquarters opposite the Perth Causeway.
During her high school years she held multiskilled part time positions at Jesters Pies and Bakers Delight and eventually started to become cashed up. After graduating from high school she applied herself at Perth TAFE to qualify last year as an architectural draftsperson. She now holds an excellent position with a progressive company which recognises her many attributes. I understand there was a recent attempt by a firm of architects to headhunt her. I should add that our daughter also found time to spend a month late last year working as a volunteer with young children in Cambodia.
Peta has had an important young man named Luke in her life for the past three years. We are all very fond of him and are pleased that his family have in a way become her second family. My wife Jill and I, and our daughter's eight brothers and sisters are very proud of her. I am sure she will accomplish much more as she progresses through life. Congratulations on reaching 21 Peta. (Kisses, hugs, applause.)
© MMXII Paul R. Weaver.
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Check out each month's subject index on the Calendar Page for all my "common-man" monologues about survival in 21st century Australia – plus a little history occasionally. An original essay is added most days as part of an undertaking to write at least several million words. Zzzzzzzz!