Tonight we're off to a friends 50th birthday party in the quaintly named village of Stapleford Abbotts. Sounds really chocolate box until I tell you it's just a little way north east of Chigwell.
Andy and Janet Price were instrumental in my surviving my teenage years and becoming a Christian - they spent more hours than I care to think about counselling and talking with me when I was depressed and difficult. Quite amazing when I consider that they were only 20/21 when they first married and moved into South Norwood, yet got stuck in straight away with the teenagers there. I've got lots of memories of that time and how they were the first real people I'd met that actually knew God for themselves instead of just going through the motions in a pew (this was my take on things then).
Andy was notable for wearing bell-bottoms that were red with blue stars all over them and a purple tee shirt that had shrunk to expose his midriff - well in advance of current fashions. Janet was always a little more conservative and careful, but was quite strikingly tall and slim with long fair hair.
This is Janet's 50th birthday party. We haven't seen them for more than 10 years, but I suspect Andy won't be dressing like that any more.