Knowing how to party in your 60s isn't always easy

In Australia, we like to celebrate. We celebrate weddings, christenings and Christmas. We celebrate holidays and we even celebrate some ‘passings’ with something called a ‘wake’. In fact, in Australia just about any reason is a celebration because we love a party.

Sadly though, in Australia, that can sometimes mean too many alcoholic beverages turning normally nice human beings into complete morons — if you know what I mean. The “party” becomes tedious and/or a battle of wills. I’ve seen people try to ‘punch’ their opinion onto others. I’ve been to parties where my social standard, or lack there of, has meant I have become invisible and I have been to parties where hands covered mouths but whispers were loud enough so that you could hear the derogatory remarks.

All this of course is the ‘good old Aussie Party’.

Just recently though I was invited to a party. It was a birthday party. My friend and I knew almost nobody at this party, apart from the ‘young’ man celebrating his half century on this earth.

It was a party with family, extended family, businessmen and politicians alike all at the same venue. Then there was me.

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Now, I don’t think anyone on this earth is better than anyone else, but being honest, these people were not usually the sort of people I would party with. They were what I call the ‘IN’ crowd. I too am part of the ‘IN’ crowd, but my in crowd is in supermarkets, in department stores, in the hairdressers. There was plenty of wine, women and song — as the saying goes at this party. For me, an over-60, I was happy to see all the luscious men in one spot. If those men are reading this, they know who they are… I told them!

So we partied. There was no snobbery, no fighting, no drunken morons and no-one was left out. This party was pure fun and frivolity. This was the best party I have been to in a very long time. I’m glad I was invited. I’m glad I went, because now this over-60 has a whole new family of friends and a new found respect for those who know how to make extended families work.

Have you ever been to a social gathering where you weren’t familiar with the other guests? How did you deal with the situation? What tips do you have for someone who might get anxious about such a situation?

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