Thursday, March 08, 2012

Ghosts of Birthdays Past

It was late afternoon on the 8th of March 1980 and a woman in labour was wheeled into an empty waiting room for no apparent reason. A few minutes later, a little baby girl was born in that empty waiting room while her family was anxiously waiting for them elsewhere. That baby was me. While all this drama was in progress, somewhere out there on a radio playing in someone's house, or in a car, or even a restaurant, one of the many radio stations would have been playing the song "Crazy Little Thing Called Love"

Many years later... 

So, I finally hit thirty two. I kinda think this needs some getting used to.

Thirty was something I looked forward to, thirty one was fine as well, because it meant I had already firmly set foot into my thirties, but thirty two seems pretty mundane. It's like turning twenty two after the anticipation of turning twenty one is over (And yes, in case you're wondering, being twenty two was one of the dullest things I ever had to endure) 

As a birthday post this year, I thought it would be interesting (for me) to take a trip and revisit old birthdays.

2011 - I turned thirty one very quietly, while I at work. Came back home to pack stuff for a vacation that I was due to leave for on the 11th. Did a fair bit of reflection, though with intentions on 'taking the leap', which I didn't. Had a small celebration  with my vacation buddies a week later, though.

2010 - Turned thirty, which was a big thing, and something I looked forward to because I kind of felt depressed a lot throughout my twenties. 

2009 - I spent the day cooking with my sister for an accidental birthday party. We were supposed to have a family gathering/birthday party for a cousin that turned 21 in February, but for some reason, the cousin was reluctant to join the party we tried planning for her and it ended up being an accidental birthday bash for me and an aunt who is also a March baby. Food was good, and it was one of the best birthdays ever. 

2008 - Voted in the general elections which fell on the same day. I spent my birthday night clicking refresh on a particular news site to find out the election results.

2007 - Had a bad attack of the migraine, ended up in a very long meeting and finally came home at 11pm. I got this laptop I'm typing this post on that very day, a sort of birthday present to myself.

2001 - Turned 21 in university, where madness prevails at midnight. In the midst of studying feverishly for an exam, a friend barged into my room and told me the moon looked beautiful that night. I tried looking out the window but couldn't see a thing. She said I had to go outside to actually see it. I followed her out like a robot, only to have a pail of cold water thrown over me amidst shouts of "Happy Birthday". This was the year I had three different birthday celebrations with friends. My parents on the other hand, completely ignored the fact that I'm not a fan of jewellery made of gold went ahead and bought me a gold pendant in the shape of a key. I know this sounds ungrateful and all, but seriously, just because it's a common gift other parents gave their 21 year old offspring, it doesn't mean I'm going to like it or even wear it for that matter.

1999 - The first birthday I had away from the comforts of my own home. This was also the year I realised that a lot of people really made a big deal of birthdays, unlike my family where birthdays was just another reason to get our cake fix without too much guilt. Three March babies shared a cake, and then the non-birthday babies decided that they'd give us glossy hair and (ahem) shiny skin by smothering cream from the cake all over us. We looked like we had escaped from a Hallo'ween party.

 1990's - There would always be a cake every year.

1984 - The very first birthday and birthday party I can remember. When my mom told me it was my birthday that day, I was under the impression that you only have birthdays once in a lifetime (I was barely four - still had a few more hours,  so I think I can be forgiven for having such a strange thought) I got lots of toys that year, the one I remember most being the train set, which my grandfather and uncle taught me how to assemble. The train actually had 'smoke' come out of it's chimney as it chugged merrily on the tracks. Fun times.

1981 - I turn one. I don't remember anything from this, but there are lots of photos of me and a bear that was twice my size. The whole atmosphere of the party had a somewhat seventies feel to it. I kind of bet being one years old and all, I probably would have hardly enjoyed the cake.

31 comments:

  1. Nice reflective post, I think the first one I remember is my fourth or fifth too. After 21 I find most have been pretty mundane, I just take the money I get and run..haha

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    1. I just take the money I get and run... ha ha, that's the best, I guess :)

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  2. wow. you do have a good memory :)
    i cant remember many of my birthdays though, although my 32nd party was quite a wild one :p
    happy birthday :)

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    1. Thanks Jaya. A wild party for your 32nd, huh? That would have been interesting :)

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  3. I remember my 21st and my 40th. The rest....unmemorable.

    A few years ago, via a TV documentary, I discovered my 21st birthday was also the day the Soviet Union came perilously close to launching nuclear weapons on Europe and the US. Now that would've made my party go off with a bang.

    http://tinyurl.com/79lkyl3

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    1. It actually sounds like a plot for a hollywood movie! Wow.

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  4. Even as a baby we enjoy cake. Happy birthday though :) I've never really celebrated mine, and other people fuss over me more than I do.

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    1. Sometimes other people do fuss over us more than we like them too, I guess.

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  5. Oh, I remember my thirties...I clung to them up until the last minute. I am forty now, but still vaguely remember 32.

    Hope you had an amazing day!

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    1. I suppose we've just got to enjoy the years as much as we possibly can. Thanks :)

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  6. @ Vatinam+
    Wish you a good day and full of joy...

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  7. i want a toy train with smoke.....

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    1. You know, I think I want one too!

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  8. I turn 22 soon. I'm not sure what to think of it...

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    1. Well, just go with the flow, I guess.

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  9. It would be far too long a post for me to travel back through all mine!

    Happy Birthday!

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    1. If you've had eventful ones, then yes, it'll be pages long. I skipped the 90's, and yet it got pretty long as well.

      Thanks :)

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  10. Happy belated birthday! It was my sisters birthday yesterday too... may you have many wonderful healthy happy years ahead ;)

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  11. YEMEN.
    They gave the books on RICK the PRICK.
    That means they got TCCARE- RTCO - LYPPON.
    And that's PTY LTD-BRATEOPH.
    That also means they got RESSO- SQUESSO- RENESS- REAREN!
    Which means they got KENCO- YPECO- STONCO- BILCO- ECOMPPO - EQUAQUAT .

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  12. Hepi belated birthday Terra . Forgive me for being tad bit late in wishing you . BTW - interesting post about a blast from the past :)

    Enjoy !

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  13. I remember my train set too ... was so excited that I broke it within 2/3 days :).

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    1. Aw. So sad. Mine was okay - then my mom gave it away to one of my cousins. Now I have nothing to remember my late grandfather by.

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  14. Happy belated birthday! What a fun little stroll down birthday lane.

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    1. Thanks... It was a fun stroll indeed.

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  15. Happy Belated Birthday! I love the fact that you remember what you did on your birthdays for the past years. I can't even remember anything before 2 years ago!

    Anyway, they say 32 is the new 25 :)

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    1. Thanks... To be honest, though, having a blog helped me remember a bit here and there.

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  16. Happy Birthday!

    What's the significance of 32? That was a good year for me, as I recall.

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