I was bored all day on Friday, wanting the celebrations to start (even though my actual birthday was the day before). I wanted to get the food that I'd brought for that night cooked and prepped but it was something that should only be done an hour or so before hand.
I went to the gym in the early afternoon, but other than that I had nothing to do until about 17:30 when I started to cook the food. It only took about 30 minutes to cook and plate up (on 2 massive sturdy silver foil platters, for the satay chicken and cheese thingies, and a smaller platter for the eclairs and profiteroles). While the savoury stuff was cooking I showered and got dressed and everything was done by 18:30. I was really disappointed that my flatmate Terry had not even volunteered to help with any of the prep, especially as he is a chef by trade. Instead he shut himself in his room and had a nap.
I left to walk down to the 2 Brewers with 2 platters of food, all on my own. Not impressed. Terry was still shut in his room. I dropped off the food and then went down to Kazbar to wait for people to turn up. Zek, Humberto (with a friend of his named Richard, quite cute), Terry (and his friend Scott) were all there after a little while, and also my sister Lynn, brother-in-law Adrian, Lisa (Adrian's niece, who I used to work with) and her hubby Bobby (who I went to school with). I made sure everyone was introduced to everyone else (which I think I neglected to do last year).
It was a nice little group. We were drinking outside, but it started to get a bit chilly, so at around 21:30 we moved down to the 2 Brewers (I popped home to get the desserts, again no offer of help).
When I got to the 2 Brewers there were three guys there from the Steelers (Matt A, Jordan & Michael D), with another Steelers (supporter) Julian turning up a little later. Tim turned up with presents for me and Chris Casey, who was there too and had celebrated his 40th birthday a couple of weeks before.
I was really pleasantly surprised when Dennis (Dionysios) arrived, as he's just moved here from Greece and I hadn't seen him since I met him about 2 or 3 years ago. He is such a handsome man. I've never seen a bad picture of him on Facebook (and he has lots of pictures there). It was nice getting to know him again.
The biggest surprise was when I saw a blond woman standing at the edge of the area that I'd reserved. I didn't recognise her for a couple of seconds and then I realised that it was my cousin Santa, who I've not seen since I was 7, but who I've been in contact with, again via Facebook, for the last couple of years. It was so easy and nice talking to her, and nice that Lynn got to meet her too (their first meeting every). We got on so well, and she lives close enough that we can go for drinks again soon.
Richard P, from the Steelers was the only other person to turn up for me though. I didn't really notice on the night, as I was having a good night, which is all that matters really. But, after the event, I was pretty disappointed at the poor showing, especially from the Steelers, and a couple of other friends who said, just that week, that they would definitely be there (Thain, Darren & Keith). I guess all that matters is that I DID have a fantastic time.
My sister, Adrian, Lisa and Bobby left before midnight, as they had to get back to Essex.
Dennis stayed the night, but in the morning reminded me of what he apparently had told me the night before: that he had a boyfriend. I was disappointed, though we still played around a bit. I actually like him a lot, probably the first person in years who I've thought could be worth getting to know better, with possible romantic results. After we had woken up in the morning, we sat watching junk television (Big Brother I think) and he left after a couple of hours. We shall see what happens.
All in all, it was a fantastic night. I just regret that I think I must have permanently forgotten at least a couple of hours of it. All because I wasn't buying my own drinks, I just drank anything anyone gave me, including beer (which I normally hate) and my first Jagerbomb, which I really quite liked.
After just feeling tired when I first woke on the Saturday, my hangover kicked in at around 14:00 and I felt like hell for the rest of the day. Oh well.