October has been a strange month.
A heavy month. A month of grieving.
I ended September with the tell tale twinge in my back.
3,000 miles of driving over the Summer, not to mention the carrying of luggage had taken its toll and my poor back decided that enough was enough, and I had to cancel my appearance at Chester Pride on 1st October.
Thankfully the organisers were very sympathetic.
I spent the following few weeks resting and having physio
On Friday 7th October my friends and I lost our dear friend, Jayne, after a long and very brave battle with breast cancer.
Jayne was kind, funny and generous. This terrible disease took our beautiful friend, leaving her 12 year old daughter without her mummy, and her own mother heartbroken at losing her daughter.
To say our village was in shock would be an understatement.
The next day I drove in a daze to Manchester to perform at “Club Tropicana” and sang “Never Can Say Goodbye” for Jayne.
Nobody there knew her, but I just had to do it.
Back at home and still in a daze, life continued as normal. Buddy had his annual doggy booster jabs. The new sofa arrived.
I drove up to Devon on 15th, part way to my last show for a while, on 16th October in Cornwall.
I love being busy, but having a break from shows until 2nd Dec is most welcome.
On the 19th I gathered with my friends to say a final farewell to Jayne.
There were so many of us there, that the service had to be relayed outside.
My daughters Godmother, and retired local vicar conducted a beautiful service, and we cried.
Oh my goodness, we cried.
Standing in the cold, with your friends mourning is such a powerful thing.
After the service we all gathered at the local cricket club and between all of the local mums, drank the bar dry of prosecco.
So much prosecco was consumed the bar manager had to make an emergency dash to Tesco for more supplies.
Jayne would have loved that!
It was whilst much prosecco was being consumed, we decided to take part in the 2017 Moonwalk.
So on 13th May 2017, I will be walking a half marathon with my friends and our vicar, in our bra’s (heaven help me)
Our team is called The Jaynebows, and we are walking in memory of Jayne, but we are walking for our friends who have fought and survived.
We are walking for our friends who are at the start of their battle.
We are walking for our mothers, our sisters, our daughters and all of our friends.
Please support us:
On Fri 21st October Miss Dean Junior, co-pilot and I drove deep into darkest leafy Surrey to meet up with our friend Toyah and experience her “Nine Lives”
We had a most enjoyable evening, and for me it was fascinating to see Toyah talking about her career. She is a fabulous orator, and for Stevie, who has relatively recently been found to be severely dyslexic, it was inspirational for her to see someone she knows and loves discuss her own battles with dyslexia so openly.
Sat 22nd Oct, and co-pilot was in charge. Off we went to shoot the covers for my next singles and album.
I will say no more, but I have to say, I don’t look half bad. In fact I’d go as far as saying I still look bloody good.
Penny Young – you do a grand job!
As the Summer has been so busy, I haven’t had much time to have my lovely neighbours round for dinner, so on Sunday 23rd, co-pilot produced a scrummy Sunday roast. Much laughter. Friends and neighbours are so important, and I love that Stevie is growing up in such a loving, nurturing group.
They are all completely bonkers, but add so much fun and colour.
On the 23rd October Pete Burns passed away.
Co-pilot broke the news to me after speaking with our lovely friend Helen at Pete Waterman’s office, who confirmed the rumour was true.
Pete, was always so lovely to me.
I remember very clearly the first time I met him and Lynne. I was recording at The Marquee Studio, when they came to visit.
Over the years I bumped into him and Steve Coy many times, and they were always, kind, funny and charming.
Stevie particularly loved him, especially after the Hit Factory Show at The O2 in 2012.
She badgered Steve Coy all day with “Is he here yet?” but Pete didn’t arrive until minutes before he was due on stage.
As the stage lights dimmed, Stevie and co-pilot were stood in the pit in front of the stage.
The music started, and Pete Waterman stood with them said to nobody in particular “Now you are going to see something really special”
And there he was, out of the darkness, The Wicked Witch of The Wirral himself.
Stevie stared open mouthed….”ITS PETE BURNS!!!” she yelled.
24th October was Buddy the Superdog’s birthday. 5 years old and still as playful as a puppy.
Miss Dean Junior enjoyed the Half Term break, throwing herself into Karate camp, pottery at The Happy Potter, playdates with friends etc etc. Me? I was just happy to get a lie in for a week in stead of being up at silly O’clock!
My Birthday fell on 27th October, and as usual I was spoilt by co-pilot and child, although Im not entirely sure that it is appropriate for The Queen Of Hi NRG to spend the evening of her birthday eating burgers and fries (OK, posh burgers & fries) at the cinema whilst watching “Trolls”??
So the following evening we went out for the full on gourmet extravaganza (Stevie preferred the burgers)
Halloween was at Team Deane’s house (Deane with an extra E because they are so fancy!) The kids went out and did some trick or treating.
The grown ups enjoyed the prosecco.
That just about sums up October, but before I go, I will finish this blog as I started, mourning a friend and a peer, the incomparable Pete Burns.
Life would have been a much duller place if we’d never met that wicked queen.
I can think of no better way to sum him up but with this line by Edna St. Vincent Millay.
“My candle burns at both ends; it will not last the night; but ah, my foes, and oh, my friends – it gives a lovely light”
Thank you to Alexander David for the Pete Burns montage.