Behind every man there's a great woman
Anyone who’s read my autobiography, Losing My Virginity, will know the story of how I met my wife, Joan Templeman. I fell in love with her from the first moment I saw her, while she worked in a bric-a-brac shop in Westbourne Grove, in London.
A blonde-haired, down to earth, Scottish beauty who didn’t suffer fools, Joan was unlike any other women I had ever met. To win her heart, I had to persistently hang around the shop and buy countless objects before we started courting – my favourite was on old advertising sign for Danish bacon of a pig and a hen singing after it had laid an egg, with a caption that read: ‘Now, that’s what I call music’; a phrase that went on to inspire the Now CD compilations.
From the beginning Joan was a very private person, and the over four decades we have been together she has remained so. She has always been keen to avoid the public eye, to the point that she has never given an interview – however, that just changed when she did her first ever interview for an upcoming film about my ballooning adventures. But while she has preferred to stay behind the scenes, she has always stood by me mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
Today is Joan’s 70th birthday, and while I know she doesn’t like the spotlight, I cannot let such a momentous occasion go by without praising her and everything she has done for me and our family.
Joan is my rock, my confidant and my guiding light. She is the most amazing mother to our two wonderful children - our daughter Holly and our son Sam, and the perfect grandmother to our three beautiful grandchildren, Artie, Etta and Eva-Deia.
As the saying goes, behind every man there's a great woman. Joan you are the greatest woman of all. Happy birthday and thank you for choosing to come on this adventure with me.