Today, I celebrate you Debs.

Young, Wild, Beautiful & Free

Today is my sister’s Birthday and in celebrating her life, I remember her fondly. Debbie was our ‘BIG SISTER’ with a heart so big she had space for many.  Of course I wanted her all for myself but she lived life so large there were no boundaries. My fondest of memories with Debbie were of two holidays. The first being our first over the border holiday alone to Namibia where we would spend a few months with her as she now inherited the title of new wife. I was still so young compared. It was my grade 4 year. Missing most the year to be with her was worth every consequence thereafter.  While in Tsumeb we spent most our days under the beautiful yet hot African sun, swimming, tanning, picnics and hanging with our holiday friends. Debbie would go off to work ever odd day and those days were the ones my sisters and I got up to no good. As typical little girls my sisters and I found a new un-opened jar of Natella. We opened it. Slowly a big finger scoop now and again. Before we knew it the jar was finished. I still don’t know if hiding the jar was less of a consequence as to stashing it back empty.  We opt for the later. It took Debs a few days to finally notice and boy when she did we were summoned.  I can only imagine how difficult if must have been for her to hold back the laughter while trying to be serious in dishing out the discipline. If I recall correctly, our punishment was to sit on our beds for an hour.  Love my sister.  Later that same holiday while Debs was house-sitting her bosses house our youngest sister Kerry thought it a really brilliant idea to squish her peanut butter sarmie into the video machine in the hopes it would play the Black Cat Peanut Butter advert. Needless to say we were in big poofie this time. Escorted flights back to SA were an event in itself. Spoilt were we as we got to even enter to cockpit, meet the pilot and look out the big windscreen.  Our first all sisters holiday but not our last. Debbie passed tragically in 1997 while in the prime of her life. Leaving behind 3 little children and her husband Neil. Today her babies are in their early 20’s and living in Australia. Debbie recently became a ‘granny’ to her first grand-daughter in Brisbane and welcomed a son-in-law. The last words my big sister said to me were “I love you Auds” as she bordered her bus to Cape Town. Tonight I raise my glass to the stars. Party it up in heaven Debs, a little Queen, Jimmy, Janis, Lennon – you have an awesome guest list.

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