Sunday, October 02, 2005

For Nostaligia's sake: Ah, another year older...

"Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me.." oh, wait. On second thought, I shouldn't sing this to myself. That's ridiculous! I guess I should be prepared to be sung to in Korean when I return to work on Tuesday, though...

In any event, I'm 27 everybody (I went blog-hopping and found this pretty funny website on a 27 year old guy who, typically, went partying for his birthday 3 years ago: check out the link!) So, around noon-30 my mother tells me, I was taken out of the womb...and it never ceases to amaze me how time really does fly. Literally.

I mean, I look in the mirror and I'm astounded at the grey hair that streaks my once naturally-golden highlights. The all-nighters I used to frequent in college or the more recent, 'I-partied-at-the-Nor-Rae-Bong last night' under-eye circles--can now be plainly seen upon my face unless I pull at least a 6 or 8 hour sleep session. Now I'm full of nostalgia, thinking of birthdays' past.. so what did I do the last couple of years on my birthday? I realize that I've spent nearly EVERY birthday over the course of the last 5 years in a different location. Where exactly...?

Perhaps a little time travel will do the trick:

26th Birthday.
Location: Alexandria, Louisiana.
Setting: Then-boyfriend Juan and I were living with my folks, and I had just graduated LSU a few months prior, thereafter spending 3 months traveling Europe before moving from Baton Rouge to Alexandria, Louisiana for work.
What happened: I worked at Books-A-Million on my special day, coming home to a little birthday party put together by Juan and my step-mother, Debbie. Sunflower cake, bouquet of flowers that Juan had picked outside, and a mixture of good smelling bath and lotion assortment that Debbie bought me. I remember I was angry that evening, for some reason, but the night was cut short, we all went to bed--I however feeling upset about everyone's lack of enthusiasm to go out to my parent's bar to party. Hmm.. strange day, indeed.

25th Birthday.
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Setting: I had a cute little apartment, right on the outskirts of the LSU campus. My buddy Johnny just moved back from spending a year in Belgium, and had moved in with me one month prior. I had spent August in the Dominican Republic, visiting Juan to try and rescue our relationship--as he had gone home the prior December because his father was sick with cancer. My mother was visiting me for the 2nd time since I moved down to Louisiana for school.
What happened: My mother and I spent the day hanging out, eating a good meal, drinking wine, partying it up--Lousiana style. It was a great adventure, though I remember very few details. I remember a new laptop, too, that Roger had sent my mother to exchange for my old one. I think it's about time I pop in that old CD of photos and check out what we did--primarily because I think we drank so much wine, I've forgotten what we did!

24th Birthday.
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana. (Ok, so not so geographically different...)
Setting: Just moved into my cute little apartment. Juan had just moved out to his own apartment--we were having troubles, plus my mother wanted me all to herself--since she was visiting me, and hadn't seen me in over a year (since I had left to go down to LA for school).
What happened: My folks, Dad and Debbie, came down from Alexandria; Juan and my mother were there also, and we all went out to eat and play putt-putt golf. It was a blast, I remember that. Not only that, but to see my parents--who are both divorced and remarried--together again. I think we ALL had a little too much fun (major details omitted for privacy's sake!)

23rd Birthday.
Bremerton, Washington.
Setting: It was 2001, and I had just come back from spending an entire year living and working as an au pair (nanny) in Miex, Switzerland. Living with my folks, and actually en-route to drive my Mercedes down to Lousiana to finish up college.
What happened: Of course, since I was living with my folks again, my mother woke me up with singing, if I remember correctly. I had an awesome lunch with my Mom and step-Dad, Roger (Roger's always been an excellent cook!) and then.. well, I guess it's time to bust out those photos again. I haven't a clue what else I did! Oh, wait.. memory serves me well: I went out on the evening of my birthday with my ex-fiancé, Jack. Yes, and we ate dinner at Azteca (which used to be our favorite, come to think of it..) and watched some live music afterward. Then, well, nothing extraordinary. Maybe there was a kiss shared somewhere in there for old time's sake!

22nd Birthday.
Miex, Switzerland.
Setting: I was living and working as an au pair for the Peiry family in Switzerland, taking care of 2 very cute French-speaking girls. Traveled a bit, took French classes, enjoyed a romance with a Swiss guy. Basically, taking a year off of school--or, more appropriately, a gap-year to
What happened: My mother was visiting me from the states, and the entire Peiry family prepared a great meal, with 2 rich, Swiss-style cakes, and a few presents (which I still have today!) It was definitely a memorable birthday!

21st Birthday.
Location: My hometown, Bremerton--mostly in Seattle, WA., though.
Setting: I was living with my then-fiancé, Jack; he had his music, and I had my studies, but somehow, we'd find ourselves splitting up 8 months later, and myself--off to explore Western Europe, aka Switzerland.
What happened: I won't ever forget my 21st birthday. Why? Jack took me to Seattle: we stayed at a beautiful hotel, ate a wonderful dinner (at a French restaurant), and later, went out to something like 5 different bars, drinking along the way. The last bar, I remember, a big, black woman who sang a few blues numbers, sand a song to me and wished me a happy birthday. It was awesome! Ah, nostalgia...

20th Birthday.
Location: Still, my hometown, Bremerton, WA.
Setting: Just 2 years out of highschool, I was going to Olympic College (Junior College), full-time, working part-time at a juice bar in my local mall, living with 3 roommate (one party-animal, one highschool friend who was about to do something stupid and get married) and I.. just met Jack and wanted to high-tail it outta there!
What happened: My 20th was oh-so-memorable. A clan of friends, including my female roommate, best-friend Devon, and a few others, played a joke on Devon's boyfriend. We borrowed a friends' van, acted like CIA agents, toilet papered his house, and went on a laughing spree, raiding Wal-Mart and watching "A Werewolf in Paris" in the guy's decked-out van. That was the evening. The daytime, I'm sure we had a party at my folks' house (dinner, that is), and a few other surprises. The day was nevertheless, memorable!

There we go, lots and lots of nostalgia. It does seem odd, however, that I'm in Korea celebrating my 27th: I never imagined that I would be here, actually, celebrating in the most far-removed foreign country I could ever imagine visiting: People are speaking this funky language, men are spitting leisurely in the street, old women gossiping on the corner about whatever, strange and spicy foods SO unlike home...and myself--a Hakwon teacher, playing it cool, trying to learn a thing or two about this delicately-balanced country. hmmph. I kind of like it here, though. And I'm sure to remember this 27th birthday.

Today's/Tonight's plan: Head over to Keong Ju to visit historical sites with buddy, Seungbo; eat a fantistic meal and discuss the years' past; topping the evening off with a few drinks, maybe the Nor-Rae-Bong (singing Karyoke hall) and maybe go dancing downtown; last, and if I can find one, an itty-bitty-cake to demolish, all by myself!



spark said...

happy birthday.

Mike said...

That's funny!

Happy 27th! Enjoy!

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday!

Anonymous said...

Happiest Birthday to the Most Beautiful daughter in the world! It's sooo strange...this is the first birthday of yours that I've not spent with you, no matter where you've been in the world! But I plan on making it up to you in the spring, Baby Grrrl! I SURE DO LOVE YOU!! Hope you got the package Roger & I sent!! xoxoxox MommaGrrrl xoxoxox

Chelsea said...

Thanks you ALL so much for the birthday wishes. It was GREAT, really! (Drank a little too much, but what the hell--it was my birthday!) ;) And I haven't yet recieved the package.. hopefully today~!! Much LOVE! xoxox