I must tell you about my birthday.
It was a bit of a change this year, poppets, I know. In years past, the lead-up to my birthday is super-charged, counting down the weeks, the days, the hours. I get on here, and I tell you about my feeeeelings. I plan what Iím going to wear, and rehearse my hair and maybe purchase a new eye-shadow for the occasion. I am a fully-grown adult, and I still believe birthdays are national holidays. I'm sort of irritated by people who are so blasť about the day they were born, refusing to tell anybody about it, believing that birthday celebrations are for kids. Why would you gyp yourself like that? Y'know?
Still and all, aside from my firm belief in Birthday Retail Magic being upheld yet again (one linen dress, five new tops), this year was a little different. For the first time, I didn't worry about where we were going to go, who was going to be there, and if it would all be cool enough and hip enough, is it fun? Will it be fun? It has to be mad, mad sophisticated fun! I picked a place in a street full of good places, made reservations, and then forced myself to shut the hell up about it. I didn't fret if people couldn't make it, which is probably why everyone made it. I didn't worry too much about what I was going to wear, because Birthday Magic means that everything looks fine on the anniversary of the day you were born.
My birthday arrived on a Saturday, which hasnít happened in a while, so I enjoyed a manicure and pedicure and a very large passion-fruit smoothie in the middle of the afternoon. I helped kill several bottles of wine with people who make me laugh that night, and I didn't share my Stilton Bleu cheesecake, because it's mine, dammit, get your own. At one point during the evening, I stepped outside the restaurant to keep some smokers company, and they offered me a cigarette, and I smoked it, and sort of shrugged my shoulders, because it was good, but not that good, and no thanks, I don't really want another one. I haven't had one in a while; I won't have another for a while. It's not really a big deal anymore.
The next morning, I quietly made a trip to Chapters, where I found six new books for a song, and then stopped for a frappuccino at Starbucks, where they thought I stood waiting for 10 seconds too long, and offered me a complimentary pastry. On the way home, Bohemian Rhapsody came on, and I rolled down the window, and sang along very loudly. Sure, it was the day after, but that's Birthday Magic right there, you know? Cheap books, gratis sweets and Queen on a day when you can drive with the window open. That is most certainly Birthday Magic. That afternoon, my immediate family, along with my aunts and my uncles and my cousins all came together, and we did it all again, because thatís what my family does every year, for every birthday, for all of us.
So, there were no great insights this year. I didn't learn anything new about the world, or myself. I didn't make some major investment purchase. I didn't meet Prince Charming, or even Prince Ok-For-Right-Now. I hadn't lost an extra stone in time for the big day, but it was fine, because I can wear what I bought last year, and that's a new enough experience to suffice right now. I wasn't the It Girl of the evening, though I got a lot of hugs, and lovely gifts, and there was a lot of clink-clinking in my honour. That was nice, you know?
It wasn't terribly exciting, which is what I always want it to be, but it was just really, really lovely, which is what I wasn't entirely expecting.
So now I'm 34. The view really isnít too bad from here.
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