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Friends are great

Thanks to phendog's dogged persistance, my Common Rotation collection is finally complete (well, at least as far as the commercially available CDs are concerned -- I'm way behind on the d\l-ing of UMs). Twice the copy she'd burned me of The Hotel Café vol. I went missing in the post; today, she finally resorted to uploading it for me. And, because the link is there anyway, and I'm in a sharing and spreading the love kind of mood, here are the boys live from The Hotel Café!

It's been a funny kind of day at the office, with people from the past dropping in and going "I don't believe it! You're still here!" all day, to which I went "Well, give it a month or two and I might not be anymore!" -- first someone I had my initial training with, 11 years ago; next, a support engineer I used to share the commute with until 7 or 8 years ago; and finally, another long-term co-worker who I'd become friends with IRL too, but who went on a to build a career and a life for herself in Barcelona 2 years ago. You know how these things go; you swear you'll keep in touch, and you fully intend to, but you get caught up in the dailies and before you know it, months have passed without a word. That's why today's series of unexpected meetings buoyed me up so much: here was a chance to apologise for the previous neglect and promise to do better in the future (I'm nothing if not optimistic!). But yeah, it's been good.

Over the last few weeks, independently of each other, Mum and Dad have been pestering me with questions as to what I want to do for my birthday, which translates to "What time do you want us to drop in for coffee/cake/drinks/dinner?". So far, I've managed to put them off by saying I hadn't thought about it, and quite possibly I wasn't going to do anything this year, although last night Mum reminded me I couldn't put off thinking about it for very much longer and maybe I should contact my sister and make arrangements to celebrate it together with my nephew, whose birthday is 3 days later.

The thing is, I don't want to celebrate my birthday. Not because I mind adding another year to the tally, but because every year, it's the same: my close kin come round to mine, expecting to be fed and watered, sit around making smalltalk, and leave me with the dishes. They bring a card and a bunch of flowers and it's nice that they want to make the effort, but...I'm just not that bothered. I didn't like my birthdays when I was a child, and I don't see the point in them now that I'm older. Most of my friends and family are away on holiday, so why should I go to all that trouble?

I gave in last year. I invited my Mum and sister round for lunch. Mum was there around lunchtime. My sister and her family didn't bother showing up until 4 o'clock, and then had the gall to appear miffed when I said I was meeting friends for drinks in town at 5. Meanwhile, lunch was ruined...so perhaps it's not surprising I'm not chomping at the bit to organise a party this year.

Thankfully now, I won't have to. My best friend called and said she was going to treat me to dinner and a special birthday breakfast in Amsterdam this year, and she wasn't taking no for an answer. Now all I have to do, is break it to the family...gently.

Comments

( 12 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )
curiouswombat
Jul. 21st, 2005 10:23 pm (UTC)
what I want to do for my birthday,
I was getting ready to say tell them what you want to do for your birthday is be taken out to a hotel for a nice dinner, when I read further down and realised someone is making sure that that is what you do - and so what I say is GOOD.

Next year tell them they can take you out instead of your friend doing it!
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 06:24 am (UTC)
Take me out? My family? What a novel idea!

Hee. You're right: why should I always be the one who foots the bill\is run ragged trying to make everyone fel comfortable? Next time, they can treat me for a change!
anonypooh
Jul. 22nd, 2005 10:05 am (UTC)
Twice the copy she'd burned me of The Hotel Café vol. I went missing in the post

you know that was fate trying to tell you you are supposed to BUY IT!

exactly .. ditto that - they are supposed to take you out! - didn't they get the memo???!! sheesh.
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 11:42 am (UTC)
you know that was fate trying to tell you you are supposed to BUY IT!

Have you looked at their website lately? That CD has't been available for purchase for months!
anonypooh
Jul. 22nd, 2005 12:07 pm (UTC)
lol .. no not me, only a dozen times every day ;)

I never noticed it was ever missing but it seems to be back then! ... isn't it this one?
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 01:42 pm (UTC)
Well, I'll be...there it is! I've been looking for Vol. I since October, and it was never there, I swear!
enigmaticblues
Jul. 22nd, 2005 02:47 pm (UTC)
I know what you mean about birthdays. This last one wasn't so bad, but the two before that sucked major for about the reasons you listed. Although, it wasn't family, it was friends that did it. Sounds like you're going to be able to do something special that doesn't require any work on your part, though. :)
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 04:56 pm (UTC)
Sounds like you're going to be able to do something special that doesn't require any work on your part, though. :)

And therein lies the appeal!
vegmb
Jul. 22nd, 2005 05:13 pm (UTC)
They come to your house so you can cook for and entertain them for your birthday? [shakes head] If they won't take you out somewhere for dinner, the very least they could do is cook dinner for you at one of their houses. So glad to see someone will be treating you right this year. :)

"I don't believe it! You're still here!" all day, to which I went "Well, give it a month or two and I might not be anymore!"
That's right! You'll be long gone and happier for it.
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 05:22 pm (UTC)
They come to your house so you can cook for and entertain them for your birthday?

Erm...yes. Please don't think badly of them, though, it's not their fault. It's the way things have always been done here: the one with reason to celebrate throws the (dinner) party, and waits on their guests hand and foot! ;-)
vegmb
Jul. 22nd, 2005 05:44 pm (UTC)
Difference in customs...I get that. But I can think of much better ways to celebrate than waiting on my family hand and foot...a glass of wine and a good book for instance. (I'm such a party animal.)
gamiila
Jul. 22nd, 2005 05:47 pm (UTC)
But I can think of much better ways to celebrate than waiting on my family hand and foot...

Funnily enough, so can I! I guess I'm just a rebel at heart ;-).
( 12 Speak Like A Child — Shout To The Top )

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