Neon burning up above

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Admittedly, the stuffy heat of the mid-month began to get to me something rotten. I found that I couldn't shake off that sticky (sorry) smelly (not sorry) feeling no matter how many cold shoulders with Lush shower gel I treated myself to. It seemed to hit even harder on the afternoon of my birthday in Brighton and while I should have been delighted as it never ever seems to be sunny on my birthday, instead I felt just like your average British citizen: unsatisfied by the weather. Boo, poor effort on my part I know but when you've drunk three ice-cold Diet Cokes back-to-back and they're doing nothing for your temperature, cranky is often the only way to be. And so I packed off onto a train back to my capital, my home. A delightfully air-conditioned train, complete with a warm skanky canned Captain Morgan's Spiced Rum & Coke. Sometimes, just sometimes, not driving everywhere anymore has it's perks.

So, thank you air-con. I arrived in London a slightly fresher, yet still not aesthetically pleasing mini-mess. A little merry. Dressed as down as down can possibly be: no make-up, summer shorts, a frantically bought £3.99 tee from H&M when I realised a shirt with actual sleeves was a no-no. And a new adventure began.

I guess this is the place to insert that actually, I don't feel very heavy with friends this year. This is not to induce a pity party because it's definitely not a bad thing, but more to point out that I guess I'm getting to that stage in life where either people drift off naturally, or I am seriously evaluating the importance of friendships and letting ties dissolve little bit by bit. However, the friends that are in my life are completely and totally priceless. This birthday has proved that to me a thousand times over, with all the little things that have been done for me and generally just being made to feel a teeny bit special. So it goes without saying that I am thankful to every single one of them.

And so to cut a long story short I found myself on the London Eye at almost 9pm, glass of champagne in hand and a huge grin plastered on my face. For a great, great person had arranged this slice of amazingness as a total surprise for me. I never even clocked that this was it until I was toddling over the Golden Jubilee Bridge, gawping at the skyline - yet there it was in all it's 135-metre high beauty. The London Eye is no stranger to me as I've actually been on it twice: once in 2003 in the daytime to celebrate my Dad's graduation, and once in 2005 in the winter night-time with a less than interested then boyfriend. But to see the sunset from the peak of it's diameter? Breathtaking, heartswelling, jelly-knee inducing. The etchings of the clouds and the hue of the sky will forever be etched in my mind. And just how stoic my hometown looked below me as if it were lit by candles, with a watercolour backdrop behind it. Truly incredible.

Twenty-five minutes later, my twenty-sixth birthday nestled at it's finale. I felt as lucky as a 26-year old as an 11-year old would feel at her bowling birthday party, if not luckier. So many good memories that come from these two days: waking up in Brighton on my birthday, fantastic times with fantastic people, and these here flight on the London Eye. Shall we call it a brilliant beginning and indeed a great omen to what can only be - has to be - a fantastic year? I absolutely think so.

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