Daughter #1 turned 22 this week, but seeing as how her 21st last year was a Covid lockdown washout, she marked it in some style in a private bar above one of Lancaster’s finest hostelries with 30 or so friends and the help of a very busy barman.
It all passed off without serious incident. Everyone chipped in on the playlist with a couple of their favourite tunes, the music got louder as the night went on and the evening was crowned by daughter #1’s note perfect and enthusiastic rendition of Lady Gaga’s Alejandro, bellowed down a mic that you’d have to prise from her cold, dead hand. The boss was even dragged up to dance to Sweet Caroline, cheered on by a youthful crowd who pumped out the lyrics like a victory anthem. It was one of those nights.
Her friends are a good bunch. But it’s only when you’re in a room with dozens of vibrant, indestructible 20-somethings who are “out out” that you realise you haven’t been the bright young thing for some time.
Me, the boss, daughter #2 and her boyfriend bowed out at a respectable 1am, daughter #1 and her boyfriend rolled in somewhere around 5am after painting the town a deep shade of scarlet. But not before we went to the after party in one of Lancaster’s late bars. And when you’re stone cold sober, such places really are a sight to behold.
It looked like a Cold War Steve hellscape. All that was missing was a naked, porcine Boris Johnson scuttling away from the mess he created and a cackling Jacob Rees-Mogg counting his gold while children starve.
Utterly terrifying. We lasted about 10 minutes before saying our goodbyes, stopping off at McD’s that at 1am had the militarised feel of a heavily guarded battlefield medical unit, and back home to let the dog out for a wee.
But the fun doesn’t stop there. Daughter #1’s present from her boyfriend included a weekend trip to Berlin. So they can celebrate it all over again. Last time I was there it was so cold the dregs of our beer froze in our plastic mugs at Hertha v Hannover. Definitely big coat weather.