Having had sixty-four of them you would think more of them would stand out in my mind. Obviously where you are, who are your friends and your family situation all affect how you celebrate your birthday. Maybe it’s the ravages of aging but I don’t remember any particular birthday as a kid or even during my marriage.

My first memorable birthday was while I was first staying with my parents in Westbank. My Dad came and woke me up early and said there was a phone call for me. It was my darling friend, Lenny, calling me all the way from Turkey to wish me a happy birthday. Now that’s special.

No sooner had I hung up the phone on her than I got a full-face cream pie from my Dad. My BFF, Wade, had put him up to it. Nice start to the day. Only Wade could dream this up and I wondered what he had in store for me for the rest of the day.

At the time I was working at a client, Central Valley Trucking and I didn’t even think they knew it was my birthday. Sure enough Wade had delivered a pie the day before and they nailed me with it. Made for a stinky day at work and I was happy to hit the shower when I got home.

The plan was to meet at the Corral so naturally I was on my guard. The darling manager, Meryl, said she wanted to see me in the back pool room. You guessed it. They nailed me with yet another cream pie. The problem was all I could do was wipe off what I could. What was left just turned sour and stunk like hell. My lovely dance partners kept telling me how gross I smelled. Thanks, Wade.

The next memorable birthday was my fiftieth. Unbenounced to me, my friend Karen Falloon had worked tirelessly to arrange a surprise party for me at the back of what I think was Dakotas. The ruse was we were meeting my parents for dinner. When we got there she asked me if I wanted to play some pool at the back while we waited for them. The doors opened and there was my parents and at least fifty of my friends, some of whom had traveled a long way to be there. It was a wonderful surprise and one of my best birthdays ever.

Another great one was at the Corral, of course. Lots of my close friends and my dance partners were all there and insisted on buying me a shot. After about thirteen of them my memory of the rest of the night is very fuzzy. The funniest part was a couple of days later went I went to the Corral everyone was congratulating me on how well I rode the mechanical surfboard. The only problem was I had no memory of it. Amazing that I was so drunk and still managed not to fall off.

cake_03Yet another one of Wade’s excellent cakes.

Birthday celebrations have certainly gone downhill since I left the Okanagan. The only birthday I had in Panama was spent having a few beers and playing pool.

Since returning to Canada and especially in London where I have no friends birthdays have just been another day with little meaning except that I’m getting older. No fun at all.