Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Thoughts on turning 30

 Today is a very special day for me. Today is my 30th birthday. For the last couple of years I have been slightly apprehensive about this moment, about leaving my twenties and my 'youth' behind, but as the fateful day grew closer I started to reflect on everything that I had experienced and acheived in the last ten years and began to feel a lot more at ease with the whole situation. I think if you can fill your life with as many happy and interesting experiences as possible then you don't need to fear the passing of time, just look back and think of all the good memories that you have created and the connections that you have made.
So here, in no particular order (apart from number 1!) are my top 20 memorable moments from my 20's.

1) Marrying the man of my dreams after five wonderful years together.
2) Buying our first flat together in Walthamstow.
3) Watching the sunrise over the Masaii Mara from a hot air balloon, peering down at a herd of giraffes galloping elegantly across the plain and a solitary lioness crouched drinking water from a stream.
4) Bathing in the plunge pool at the foot of Angel Falls, Venezuela, feeling the spray from the breathtaking kilometre-high cascade behind us.
5) Graduating with a first class honours degree in chemistry, the culmination of four years hard work and a lot of fun times.
6) Being offered my first proper job after graduation (The company where I still work!)
7) Watching mountain gorillas in Rwanda, scrambling up the side of a volcano to emerge onto a clearing where we watched in awe the majestic male silverback chewing on bamboo shoots while the baby gorillas swung on vines and tumbled in fluffy piles down the hill.
8) Spending four weekends at Barretstown, a beautiful and magical castle in Ireland, where children with terminal ilnesses and their families come for a weekend of theraputic recreation. Each time I have been there as a volunteer child carer has been a humbling, moving and heartwarming experience which I will never forget.
9) The spectacular view of Mount Fuji from our onsen spa on honeymoon in Japan.
10) Moving to London for the first time in 2004 and realising that I could never go back to live in some sleepy town or village.
11) Starting my own blog and discovering that people are interested in what I have to say!
12) Discovering a love for food and gastronomy, trying sushi for the first time, finding new restaurants, visiting secret supper clubs.
13) Buying my first car at the age of 22, a J-reg Ford Fiesta which I loved dearly but broke down on numerous occasions, most notably when the tyre blew out when I was driving up the M11 at 70mph.....and a few months later was broken into for someone to steal the radio.
14) Running a 10K with Paula Radcliffe. OK, so it was a charity run and Paula 'jogged' round in 40 minutes, but I still got to chat to her for a few seconds before she strode off into the distance. For me the real acheivement was getting my normally rather unfit self to the stage where I could happily run 10K without stopping (or dying).
15) Riding camels into the sand dunes of Morocco and spending the night under the stars.
16) Getting our cat Milo. When Jon and I went to the cat rescue centre and saw the fat grumpy cat  in the back room that no-one else wanted we knew we had to take him home.  Two years on he is a tiny bit less fat and still pretty grumpy.
17) Hiring a car and driving down highway 101 from San Francisco.
18) Staying best friends with Gemma + Kirsten throughout the whole decade and knowing that your best friends really will always be there for you!
19) Walking along a deserted beach in Thailand, riding elphants, rafting on bamboo rafts, learning how to make proper Thai green curry.
20) Spending the night in a buddhist temple at the top of a mountain near Kyoto, watching  geishas rush along the ancient streets.

Yep, its been a pretty good 10 years, I wonder what surprises the next 10 will have in store!


  1. what a wonderful list! Happy birthday and hope you will do everything you want to do and become and see. Lots of love, Uyen x

  2. Excellent list - and I believe your 'youth' lasts well into your 40s these days (so I've noticed by those around me! In fact, my parents are yet to grow up and they're in their 60s!).

    Have a great day x