I’ve never been one for celebrating my birthday. In fact I have basically given up on milestone birthdays – mine have never quite worked out. At the age of 21 I had a 3-month old baby and even though I partied hard, my only memory of that event is having to get up really early to go to the in-laws house and breastfeed while still drunk! When I turned 30 I was 9 months pregnant with my son and the only thing I can remember about that night is going out to eat really hot curry in the hopes that he would arrive early. He was born 9 days later. On my 40th I was in the throes of a bitter divorce with lots of really horrible shit going down and was not in the mood for anything big. I had drinks with a few friends and that was that. I had just met Daniel and the night before my birthday he came around with Zoo biscuits which was very sweet but hardly earth shattering. Having said that I have quite a few years until my next milestone birthday!!! But with milestone birthdays such as those in the past, I was prepared for just another birthday to go by. But a series of events took over that turned my birthday into a birthday WEEK. I have NEVER had one of those!!!
A lot of it could be based on the fact that I didn’t have Cait as a friend for any previous birthdays. She loves birthdays … and Christmas and all things celebratory. So when she heard mine was coming up she did not take that lying down. And soon we were booked to go and see a live concert to celebrate my birthday, The Lumineers at the Hammersmith Apollo.
But then, lo and behold, I heard the Springbok Nude Girls were coming to town and playing on the same day! I was really bummed because I really love SNG. But then it turned out that they were playing in the afternoon, not the evening. Which meant I could do both! How fortuitous is that?! No one I know in London could go so I had to do SNG solo . I will admit to a bit of trepidation about that but as soon as I got there, all was well. Everyone was South African and the show was being held in a really dingy, dark club which made me feel right at home. I could do this! SNG were really good. I jammed on my own drinking my klippies and coke.
Then I noticed another woman on her own and we started chatting. Turns out her husband was doing the sound and that’s why she was on her own. After the show we got to know each other and watched the rugby (SA vs Barbarians) on the big screen. It was lovely to meet someone so randomly and I managed to give her some advice on where to look for work when she returned to South Africa (her and her husband are moving back next month after 9 years in London). It felt good that the first leg of my day had gone so well. Sorry, no pics because it was too flipping dark!
2nd leg involved meeting up with Cait and friends. While Cait and I were waiting for the friends to arrive, I managed to polish off pretty much a whole bottle of red wine. I was drinking quickly so that I would finish the bottle before going inside. I didn’t manage to but I also managed to sneak the bottle in. The secret to that is to wear a backpack the same colour as your jacket and voila, no frisking!
No one else wanted red wine so I ended up drinking all of it. The woes of that idea came the next day in full and violent force. Luckily though, I do actually remember the concert, which cannot be said of all the concerts I have been to. The concert itself was amazing.
It looked so packed at the back but we decided to try and see if we could get closer to the stage and ended up basically being at the front. GOLDEN CIRCLE! Not sure if it’s the British politeness kicking in but the front was way less crowded. What a jol. Except for 2 girls who were exuberantly dancing around and pissing everyone off as they flung their long blond hair into everyone’s drinks, everyone was very well behaved. The girls took a liking to me and I spent half the night sandwiched between the two of them. All very entertaining. After the concert we had the option of going out but by then I was really tired or was it pissed.?? Judging by how I felt the next day, it was the latter!!! Spent the next day feeling VERY sorry for myself but just before I left Cait in the evening she whipped out a birthday cake and a present and the most special card – and so my birthday week began!
Woke up on my birthday to masses of messages and a birthday banner from my house mates, so sweet! I love how people you hardly know still take the time to message you on your birthday on Facebook, I think that’s really endearing. Loads of close friends sent voice notes and it just felt like the day was a constant stream of happiness. The most shocking thing that happened was that my boyfriend actually sent me some presents – 5 in total! It must be said that neither of us are into celebrations of any kind. We find any Hallmark holiday of real vomit status and it’s just not our vibe. However, as we all know, a small part of us does want our loved ones to treat us to something at least a little bit special on our birthdays. However, this year I was not expecting it and was not upset by it either. Which made the fact that he did it EXTRA special. Needless to say, the gifts had his humour written all over them …
Card Against Humanity card/board game and the rest are too personal to divulge here!
My day ended with my housemates taking me out for dinner to Jamie Olivier’s restaurant where I ate the best pizza ever. And we ended out night at the Pigs Ear where we drank Raspberry beer. It was delicious!!
Thanks to all my amazing peeps for making me feel so special!
My birthday did not end then. Had a long weekend in France to top it off but that deserves its own post which you will need to wait a week to read.