IMAG0723Newsflash: We have a birthday every year. When we’re kids it’s great fun. We get to eat loads of jelly and play pass the parcel and get presents. They’re days that stand out as out of the ordinary. My oldest consciously located memory is on my fourth birthday, on a staircase in Jersey, contemplating the inevitable passage of time properly for the first time while catching a glimpse of myself in a mirror. Last week it was Brian’s birthday, and he spent it flying to New York. He had me jump on him at midnight, and cook him birthday breakfast before he flew, but that was it. Airplane birthday. So we had a surprise lined up for him today.

The people I love seem to enjoy springing surprise parties on their friends. Minnie organised one for my birthday a few years ago. Before I flew to LA, Brian organised a surprise farewell bash for me. It was great. I got to hang out with some dear old friends. This time we made one for Brian. Mel, his girlfriend, organised it and put the word about and people came from all over the country to meet at Above the Arts. It was delightful. I had to say goodbye to him as he left the flat, looking like I wasn’t going anywhere. As soon as he was out the door I threw clothes on and sprinted to the tube station so I could beat him to the party. Sprinting was no fun, as you’d appreciate if you read between the lines of last night’s blog and made sense of quite how catastrophically hammered I was yesterday. I was feeling pretty horrible by the time I got into the train, sweating old booze through my eyes.

It was worth it for the look on his face. Considering he loves springing surprises on others, he hadn’t thought to expect that we’d do it for him. Mel had organised a Pirate and Princess kids party. There was cheese instead of jelly. We played pass the parcel, pin the patch on the pirate and musical bumps. It was delightfully immature, augmented by actual kids who were playing as hard as we were. I’m glad I took the day off work for it. Sometimes it’s good to just get a load of friends into a room together and behave like children. And today was the first day I’ve had for a while where I haven’t put pressure on myself to turn up. I could just relax, enjoy good company and be a bit hungover. A proper Sunday. Now I’m sitting on the warm sofa at home, listening to good music, and playing silly games with lovely people. I’ll probably be in bed very soon charging up for the coming week. But right now I’ve been given a can of JD and coke and told that if I don’t drink it I’ll be “a gimpy bellend”. *Rolls eyes* *cracks can* *signs off*

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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