We went to a thirtieth birthday party on Saturday night, the thirtieth birthday party of my best friend's little sister. There is nothing, nothing more ageing or depressing than for people who you only ever saw as much younger than you hitting milestones that you're still in denial about. We were excited to be asked, of course. For a start it meant that we were still young enough to paaarrrtttaayy!-they do say that nowadays don't they? If not I fear I may have made a small gaffe jumping onto a table and yelling it through a bread stick in an attempt to get this paaarrttaayy started. But I was being young, hip, crikey we had an overnight babysitter and could deny all childcare responsibilities for at least fourteen hours. We could join the group of carefree kids tripping the light fantastic who could still claim to have some sort of a grip on the word twenty.
Deciding to deny any relationship with the big three-oh I attempted such cliches as ooh, you can't be thirty, I still think of you as eleven and I still feel sixteen ha ha ha ha ha, although I stopped short of I used to change your nappies before I shot myself (or the birthday girl shot herself at the horror). I could be twenty, or there abouts, just watch me jiiiive.
There was a difference though, it was much more civilised than I remember things. Husband and I left our social life behind at the grand old age of twenty seven, right at the height of every one's partying. Finally every one's salaries were looking up, as was their holiday allowance and consequently pulling potential. And what did we do? Have a baby. Well done. Everybody else flitted to Morocco and hugged orangutans in a forest somewhere (apparently Borneo but I saw the slide shows and it looked suspiciously like Whipsnade Zoo). We swapped Going Out clothes for jeans, trainers and Teflon coated tops, everyone else swapped Work Clothes for flip flops and a backpack. We have, in a nutshell, been absent from any kind of swinging (in the music sense, not in the car keys in the middle of the room sense) social life while we changed nappies, burped babies and negotiated school runs.
But, now we were back! The children finally old enough for an over night babysitter that hadn't had to be bribed with a holiday package and bonuses, here we were, ready to don our dancing shoes and, to be honest, get sloshed again. Whoo hooo!
Though we had you see, failed to get one teeny tiny point: while we were absent everyone else had grown up too. Rather than be greeted by shots of flaming zambucaas and vodka girls sticking alcohol down you mouth and a nipple in your ear, we all had a quiet drink and chats in a bar. We then went to a very civilised Indian Restaurant (rather than a curry house, the only one open at three am, the reason being that only incredibly drunk people would eat the food and not complain to Health and Safety the next morning). It was delightful, we felt neither old nor young, no pretending to be in our twenties and surreptitious glances saw the same creep of age on everyone as on us. Husband even spent a happy half hour chatting to every man there while chancing a quick photo on his phone of the back of their heads. He's had them printed out today and now we have a gallery of every bald spot in the place. Husband compares tolerably well and is strutting about the house like a twenty nine year old. A twenty nine year old that wears pyjamas and slippers. But twenty nine nonetheless.
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