"It's our diamond birthday," my oldest friend Jean announced to me earlier this year. So me and the Queen - we arrived at the same point together somehow. There was no escaping it. On May 31st 2012 I would join the ranks of old codgers, senior citizens, OAPs, and the worse thing? I won't even get my freedom pass until July 2014.
The only way to cope was to plan a zillion celebrations - just like the Queen. I invited some of my writer friends over for what I called, 'A writer's brunch' in the garden. They loved it! We drank Prosecco and talked about books and I even thought of making a speech. Fortunately I abandoned that idea quickly and read a poem instead. No, I didn't take photos and plaster them all over Facebook. We just relaxed and enjoyed each other's company.
Although I didn't get any diamonds ( because I became one??) I got some great presents. This one could have been from the Queen I suppose. Actually it was from another friend, Liz, who went diamond the month before me. "Its got your dates on it," she quipped.
My lovely husband ( who gave me far too many presents) has discovered that you can get pictures onto mugs. So here is one of his presents ( the patriotic teapot is from my daughter.)
We all went out for lunch and suddenly, after the meals, my daughter says, "Turn round mum." And there was the cake. I was speechless ( unusual for me!)
The waitress was giving me such strange looks so I said, "Don't worry, its my book cover." She smiled with relief.
So if you are about to go diamond here are three tips :
1. Ignore the friends who gasp in horror - they don't mean anything, its just such a big number and everyone wants to be 40 something these days ( yeah, even the 20 somethings - don't ask me!)
2. Have lots of little parties and celebrations, it helps you to absorb the impact coming up to meet you.
3. And make sure you get your book cover on a cake - its utterly amazing!
I'm happy for you to comment, but don't feel you ALL have to wish me happy birthday - there was loads on Facebook and we don't want to clog ABBA up.