Pat Wright's recent surprise diamond birthday party hosted at Goat Hill, Hanover, by her close friends and business partners Katrin and Patrick Casserly, could quite easily have been a 'Miss PJ' gathering. Those whose hair journey started at Balmoral Avenue and ended at Worthington would recall those spectacular customer service appreciations where one customer, at the end of a glorious evening of eye-popping fashions, perfect hairstyles, camaraderie, great fare, music and dancing, would be declared Miss PJ.
Wright's 'do' provided all of the above. This time, however, it was all about the woman — the inimitable PJ (as she was affectionately called) — who reigned supreme some three decades ago at her salon, introducing new hairstyles, cuts and colour, fresh takes on interiors, the bandana, and television productions like The Diana Wright Show.
It was at the salon - scissors in hand, always in the latest trend complete with that half- scowl/ half-smile and her beloved mum, the ever so stylish and proper Mary Jenkins seated in the receptionist area — that PJ and her team would work magic.
Several generations would be introduced to this Saturday therapy so there was little surprise that some invitees boasted three generations of PJ clients.
All good things must unfortunately come to an end and, indeed, life is not always perfect. And so, salon habitués and new friends converged at Goat Hill to applaud the woman with whom we shed tears, heartbreaks and joy, and who, miraculously, always bounced back. It was easy to reflect on the good old days as we embraced Dawn Edwards, her sister Jennifer Goodison, daughter Shelly-Ann and her mum Alice Alberga, the family matriarch (still sprightly at 94), Denise DeMercado, Angela Neita and her sister Janet Morgan-Morrison, and remembered the gorgeous outfits from Carmen Brown's next-door boutique at Balmoral Avenue.
It was the presence of her beloved first-born Sajato Jarrett and granddaughter Naiyah that would bring Wright, clad in black, to tears.
Emotions finally in check, the party commenced with hugs, kisses galore and an elegant sit-down dinner prepared by the one- time baby, now all grown, up chef Peter Wright.
It was the musical styling of Peter Lloyd, however, that really lifted the spirits and upped the celebratory mode. Lloyd, ably backed by the Irie band, took us on a musical journey sprinkled with anecdotes aplenty.
As Pat Wright cut her birthday cake aided by her two sons, and guests enjoyed slices along with the most delicious cornmeal pone, the party took on a mellow mood.
SO raises its own toast to the influential Pat Wright — a life of abundance; a life well-lived.