November 22, 2017

23rd at IKEA (among other places)

When the weather decides to not cooperate, and your birthday tradition is normally spent outdoors with around twenty or so other people, the only place you can really turn to is IKEA. As gutted as I am that my birthday was not spent in a forest this year, the vegetable medallions from the Swedish furniture store sure softened the blow. (Highly likely that that sentence is one of the oddest things I've ever come to write-up for this blog) If you know, you know. If you don't, please educate yourself on the wonders of IKEA over here.
Besides wandering the vast expanse of the warehouse, my 23rd birthday celebration continued onto the local pub, and by the end of the night, I found myself sitting in a booth at Riverdale's very own Pop's Chock'Lit Shoppe (otherwise known as Rocko's Diner in Mission, BC). It was a jam-packed birthday, certainly another that's one for the books. As a way of retelling the events, here's my annual birthday post -- in the style of: 23 things that happened on my 23rd birthday.

1 | A few days before my birthday, I arrived home to a massive package from the mailman with my name on it. It was an early birthday present, unexpectedly sent from a friend from Calgary. Alissa, if you're reading this, there were tears involved when I opened that box and realized it was a record player. I've always said that I was holding off on buying one. I've always said that it'd be the first thing I'd buy when I move out in the future. You beat me to it. I was floored (and consequently spent the rest of the evening bluetooth-ing songs to it just so I could hear the crackle of the speakers.

2 | A day before, on Friday evening, I was on the couch watching (read as: crying over) Suits only to be unexpectedly blindsided by Colleen showing up at my doorstep on her way home -- with cake and a card in hand. The grin on her face when she said that there were perks of being friends with my mom on Facebook made me laugh. They conspired behind my back to make sure I was home. I was surprised. It was the kindest.
3 |  My family, spread apart between Vancouver, Ottawa, and Philippines managed to send me a birthday greeting at exactly midnight when it became the 11th of November. I saved a screenshot of my inbox with the 12:00am timestamps. Somehow that pleases me to no end.

4 | Jenny called sometime after midnight, as birthday traditions go, and we talked about growing older while simultaneously still feeling like babies ("bobbies").
5 | I went to anticipated mass with my family. It was nice to be at St. Matthew's on the day of my birthday.

6 | Afterwards, we went to Boston Pizza near the airport. It was uncharacteristically busy. The staff was struggling. We waited ages for our food. The waitress spilled one of our dishes. We waited a little more. They gave us a free dessert. It was a happy ending. Plus, all the events led to us not having to kill time elsewhere while waiting for Anne, who we later picked up from the airport that evening.
7 | When we got home, it was close to midnight. Instead of unpacking, Anne sat in my room. We played tunes from my new record player. She recounted her Encounters with Canada trip to Ottawa with me. I remembered when I was in her shoes back in 2010.

8 | Before she went to sleep, I finally got to open her present for me, which arrived earlier that week. The Amazon package had been taunting me since. She thoughtfully got me This Modern Love by Will Darbyshire, with a note inside that said "Love you more than you and I love Steve Harrington times infinity." It was perfect.

9 | I spent practically all day Sunday in bed. It was glorious. I wouldn't have changed anything.
10 | Monday morning, our six car parking lot meetup at St. Matthew's started the day.

11 | We convoyed to IKEA instead of the usual forest because of the downpour. And look, I know IKEA is not at all a forest, but if you grimly think about all the wood that's been chopped down and turned into furniture, then the connection is there (was that in poor taste?).

12 | Jeffrey and I struggled to hold down 2 and a half long tables for our group while everyone else lined up for food. He made fun of how I struggled to tell strangers that the seats were taken, only to have not been able to do the same moments later. HA!

13 | Vegetable medallions were devoured. It was heavenly. I wish they were more easily accessible in my life.
14 | Our group of close to twenty people ranging from 16 to 25 years old roamed IKEA -- faking scenes, making up backstories, and laughing too hard at Swedish furniture name puns.

15 | Unsurprisingly, we all eventually got split up, only to have met at the warehouse small group by small group. I vividly recall Noah joking that seeing the others resurface from the depths of IKEA was like the end of an apocalyptic movie. I couldn't have put it into words any more fittingly.
16 | After, we convoyed to the bowling lanes nearby. It was a statutory holiday so I wasn't allowed to make reservations ahead of time, and the place ended up being filled to the brim. I remember Anne pleasantly giggling over the oldies we passed by amidst their bowling league tournament. Unfortunately, the wait was going to be way too long to get so many of us out onto the lanes.

17 | Luckily, I was able to call our local pub, Edith & Arthur's to book a sudden reservation. They were kind enough to accommodate us (to my complete relief).
18 | We discussed Myers-Briggs personality types in the dimly-lit pub as more people trickled into join us. I convinced Wyne to do hers and we found out we were exactly the same (INFJ).

19 | My brother, despite my vehement refusal, bought me a shot of something I'd rather not say the name of. Luckily, it tasted much better than the Tequila he got me on my 19th birthday.
20 | After everyone left the pub, the sun was starting to go down, but the day had yet to end. Alex, Colleen, Wyne, and I ended up heading all the way to Mission to Rocko's diner (otherwise known as the shooting location for Riverdale's very own Pop's Chock'Lit Shoppe).
21 | The drive was mainly soundtracked by an odd mixture of The Band Camino, and Sam Smith's new album, and as the dark unlit roads curved through back roads, the night sky was eerily tinted red. Of course we were quick to point out that it was very Stranger Things-esque.
22 | When we got to the place, we sat on a booth, amidst the classic North American diner trope -- filled with red leather seats, vintage signage, and the classic red neon signs. We had practically spent the entire day eating, and yet, I still ordered some breakfast for dinner at the diner. No regrets.

23 | Upon arriving home, before heading to bed, I cracked open the book of poetry I received from the Cacatians. Besides writing an inscription at the start, Noah also took the time to go through the pages and write notes on em'. I teared up (naturally). I'll be clinging to that forever.

That about sums up my 23rd! Here's to next year and the years after that.

Stay gold,


No comments:

Post a Comment