A dash of Pepper…

…with a splash of Mint

Birthdays and growing up

Posted by Pepper on April 14, 2014

Yesterday, I turned 28. I must say I had a terrific time. On the eve of my birthday, we went out for dinner to an extremely cheap place that happens to be one an old favourite. Anybody heard of Crystal in Charni Road? An average meal for 2 costs Rs. 150. Such prices are refreshing, aren’t they? Post our dinner we sauntered in to Taj at Gateway of India. Yes, we choose to dine at cheap places and then treat ourselves to coffee in a luxurious surrounding. On our way back, we even stopped at Marine Drive and sat there for a while facing the sea. Another favourite hangout.

We then prepared ourselves for the long drive back home. We were still not home when the clock struck 12. My phone started buzzing. The usual suspects. Only my close friends know and remember my birthday. And since I choose to not notify anybody of my birthday on Facebook, I don’t usually experience a barrage of calls and wishes the way most others do. But that is how I prefer it, I suppose.

I was in for a surprise the moment we entered the house. A ‘Happy Birthday’ banner. The living room done up with streamers and balloons. Candles lit on the table. A tempting chocolate cake. A bottle of wine. Another bottle of Bailey’s Irish Cream. Little gifts surrounding the cake. My jaw dropped! The last time I had streamers and balloons on my birthday was probably 10 years ago. Or more. Walking in to our lovely home and seeing it so well decorated was such a wonderful surprise! I looked at Mint and asked him, ‘did you do this?’

I was so busy admiring the house, I had still not turned on the light. Before Mint could respond to me, I heard a little explosion that made me let out a loud scream! The explosion turned out be a big balloon that had been made to burst. It sent confetti and glitter flying all around us. And in the dark, out of nowhere a few figures sprang up, screaming, ‘Happpy Birthdayyy!’.

Whoa! So it was the friends. This had been planned! They had coordinated with Mint and the sister, entered the house while we were away, decorated the place, set out the cake and the candles. They then hid themselves under the dining table and behind the sofa. When they sprang up in the dark, I almost suffered a cardiac arrest. No, really. I have a weak heart and seeing people appearing out of nowhere in the dark scared the hell out of me.

It was ofcourse, an extremely sweet surprise. I was overjoyed. We cut the cake. Drank wine. Enjoyed the yummy as always Irish cream. Clicked pictures. Fiddled with my birthday gifts. Fooled around. And then played games till the wee hours of morning. I went to bed at 4 am, while the others continued playing Taboo and went to bed only after 5.

Cutting the cake, while a blurry Mint plays in the background..


Feeding the BFF


Opening the Bailey’s


We woke up late in the morning and headed out for some brunch since we were all starving. I tried not stuffing myself too much because I was supposed to go out for lunch with my family too! I did have a lovely lunch with my parents, sister and Mint shortly after the big brunch with my friends. As a result, I felt more stuffed than I had in a long time.

I slept in the afternoon and in the evening, I decided to do some shopping and bought myself a bag of new clothes. It is summer and I wanted to buy some loose cotton dresses and bright harem pants. I can’t wait to wear them. Yay!

Post my shopping spree. We headed out for dinner. After all the indulgence and bingeing, the plan was to eat something simple, but do things really go as per our plans? Not really. So we ended up having yet another elaborate meal in a garden restaurant. Fun times, so I won’t complain.

In the midst of all the celebration, I tried to remind myself of my new age. And I tried to not gasp. Because really, I am quite done with all the gasping I do. I’ve always been vocal about how hard I find it to cope with my age. Mentally, I still feel 15 and I am quite tired of being unable to really grow up.

I have no choice but to embrace adulthood. Yet, I struggle. I can’t help leading an ‘adult’ life. I go to work, I cook, I *try* to manage my finances, I deal with banks, but every time I do these tasks, I expect somebody to applaud and say, ‘Good job!’. I feel like a child who has managed to accomplish a very ‘grown up’ feat. So I expect people to clap and appreciate. What I need to do is realise that there will be no appreciation for doing these adult acts. Because I am expected to do them. They are meant to be a part of my everyday life. I am hoping this realisation and acceptance comes to me soon.


68 Responses to “Birthdays and growing up”

  1. Smita said

    Belated Birthday wishes!!! You surely had a lovely time 🙂

  2. Happy Birthday , Pepper.

  3. Arch said

    Happy Birthday Pepper!! You sure had a great day! Wish you a great year ahead. 🙂

  4. Jazz said

    Lol at the last para.. Happy happy Birthday Pepper, hope this new year brings you even more happiness !!

  5. S said

    Happy Birthday, Pepper : )

    I would say keep the child in you alive. Growing up can wait another year 😀

  6. Happy birthday Pepper. I remember your post on 24 turning 25. I can’t believe you are 28. I mean I still feel you in your early 20s. I have same problem accepting the fact that Chucky will turn 5 in 2 months. I not even talking about my birthday and age, my birthday is just around the corner. Never mind I am going in a different track. Wishing you the best this year has to offer. Stay young and Stay beautiful . Love you the way you are , don’t ever try to change 🙂

    • Pepper said

      Hey, when’s your birthday coming up? And wow! You remember that post! You always surprise me by remembering old posts. You are awesome 🙂

  7. Happy Birthday 🙂

  8. stutigupta said

    Happy birthday Pepper!! Have a great year ahead, as fun as this day!

    Don’t worry about adulthood, the “real” adulthood will creep up on you and it ain’t fun! I leapt from the mental age of 18 directly to 31, when I became a mum.

    Have fun!

  9. Suma said

    Happy Birthday to you….
    Happy Birthday to you….
    Happy Birthday Dear Pepper….
    Happy Birthday to you!!
    May all your dreams come true and have a wonderful year ahead!!

  10. Titaxy said

    happy birthday, pepper!

  11. Comfy said

    Happy Birthday Pepper! Sounds like you had a fabulous day. Hope the year follows along the same lines with a lot of friends, laughs, love and happy times 🙂

  12. Oh, what a Lovely B’day ! Sounds absolutely fantastic Pepper! 🙂

    As long as one is made to feel so delightfully special and loved on the big day, the age/number that adds up, really should not matter.

    I have heard, everyone has an in-built age. While I think, mine is 23, I have known people who are at 10 and 18, even though they are physically much older. I also know kids and teenagers who act and talk like they are 65. No kidding.

    So you will stay at 15 forever and that’s wonderful, if you ask me 🙂

    Wishing you a fabulous year ahead. {{Hugs}}

  13. Warmest bday wishes, Pepper. The pictures look so warm , cozy and full of love and joy.
    Your last para echoed with me. I am a few months older and liked you am amazed that I do these so called ‘grown up’ activities when in fact I am very much a grown up!

    • Pepper said

      I wonder why we feel so amazed when we do these ‘grown up’ activities when we are supposedly grown ups. I think about it often.. 🙂
      Thanks for the wishes!

  14. You remind me sooooo much of my best friend 😀
    Who says one has to grow up? It is totally overrated.
    Wish you a kickass year ahead 😀

  15. Many happy returns of the day, Pepper! Happiness always!
    Dont worry about wanting an applause on doing grown up stuff. I think of the same 😀
    And your blog followers will always go yay at all your achievements!

  16. pixie said

    Happy Happy Birthday Sweetie!! 🙂
    Wishing you the best for the coming year and always! 🙂

  17. The Bride said

    Happy birthday! I am just about getting over the feeling that someone should applaud when I get something ‘adult’ done, and I have two kids. I think the arrival of kids makes you feel more adult because you have to be, and you find yourself in the role of praiser and applauder, but I sometimes feel amazed at the adult role I fall into with my kids also.

    • Pepper said

      Totally agree. The arrival of kids will definitely make somebody feel more adult. Not totally sure when I will choose to be a parent though, so I have no idea for how much longer I won’t feel grown up..

  18. happy birthday pepper.. lots of love and hugs …. 🙂

  19. chipmunk said

    belated birthday wishes dear 🙂 🙂 🙂

  20. R's Mom said

    Super :):) Happy happy wala bday to you…..hope you continue to have fun times all your life..

    Errr…didnt someone say that age is just a mental thing or something like that…15 is old enough eh?

    PS – What is Bailey’s Irish Cream???

  21. Ashwathy said

    What a lovely day! Looks like you were thoroughly indulged… 🙂 Yay!

  22. Sunshine said

    “but every time I do these tasks, I expect somebody to applaud and say, ‘Good job!’. I feel like a child who has managed to accomplish a very ‘grown up’ feat. So I expect people to clap and appreciate. What I need to do is realise that there will be no appreciation for doing these adult acts. Because I am expected to do them. They are meant to be a part of my everyday life.”

    You got it bang on right! I love days & never disliked growing up so all of a sudden am surprised by my own reluctance to grow up & this is exactly what it is!!

    Happy belated bday!! 😊

    • Pepper said

      I have never had a problem with ageing either. But I have a problem with the pressure to be mature and responsible as you grow. The world doesn’t take too kindly to irresponsible and loony adults. I guess that is why I am reluctant to ‘grow up’. 🙂

  23. Sri said

    Belated birthday wishes!!

    Super birthday celebrations!

  24. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! That sounds like so much fun 🙂

    Ok, we used to go to Dublin, a pub at 5-star Kakatiya, drink, dance and eat chinese off a cart for dinner because it was yum!
    Also, HOW skinny art thou 😦 Sigh!

    • Pepper said

      Hah, you did those kinda things too? 😀 See, the place doesn’t matter, right? Only the awesome food does. I’ve never had qualms eating in shady looking places as long as the good tastes good,,

      I am more skinny than I’d like to be. But I really shouldn’t complain..

  25. Richa said

    Its so good to have your friends and family plan so much for you on your special day. I miss it every year…though have M and now Little M with me. 🙂
    And I want to assure you that you’ll not feel even 50% grown up until you have a baby. 🙂 I am a few months elder to you and I thought seriously about the need to behave like a grown up when I had Little M.

    Many congrats.

  26. Shweta said

    Belated birthday wishes pepper!! Although your blog is senior by ages… You are only a year elder to me!! And surprisingly we have the same thoughts about growing up! I guess most of the girls do. Sigh !! why is it such a pain…??
    And you sure had one helluva time celebrating your birthday. Wish you many more great ones…

    PS: I envy your “no paunch” figure.

    • Pepper said

      For some reason I always considered you to be a lot younger to me. Anyway, I am glad I am not too old yet 😛

      I have a *big* paunch, though it is not visible in these pictures. Someday if I have the courage, I will put up a picture of my very awful looking paunch.

      • Shweta said

        That ‘reason’ might be my amateur blogs 😀

        Don’t be too glad, you’re not growing old… It’s both of us!!!

        *big* paunch not showing a wee bit??? Share a little of your luck!! Cuz paunch is the first thing visible in my pictures 😦

        • Pepper said

          Your blog posts are great, just so you know! At the end of the day, each of us thinks our posts are immature and amateur. Not sure that is true.. 🙂

          There is no luck involved in the paunch not showing. The secret is to not allow others to take close ups or take a side profile that will showcase your belly. And to only display/share pictures that don’t show your paunch. Hide the rest 😛

  27. Shweta said

    And yes! I have been to Crystal. Food so cheap yet tastes fine… Not to forget the burnt sockets and shaky stairs as ambience!!! 😛

    • Pepper said

      Burnt sockets that seem to be caked with dirt too 😛 I try to shut my eyes whenever I notice those. Lol.. Almost the entire section they’ve built up is shaky . But hey, the food is good. That’s my own focus..

  28. Seema said

    Happy Birthday Pepper. yeah growing up sucks.

  29. Deepa said

    Happy Birthday pepper, I would die for a waist like that!! Man, you are soo lucky!!

    • Pepper said

      Thank you Deepa. The waist is tiny on the whole, but the belly holds a lot of flab.. I wish I had a flat stomach.. Irrespective, I am lucky I know. Especially because I do nothing to watch my diet or exercise. I just have good genes..

  30. ashreyamom said

    happy happy b’day Pepper.. now a days at home we are reading the book pepper and his friends, every time i read the name i think of u.. lucky that you have friends who plan surprises for u.. 🙂

    • Pepper said

      Thanks AM! I have a friend who has a dog named Pepper. She reads my blog too. She tells me I remind her of her dog, and her dog reminds her of me 😛 I tell her I am quite a bitch myself – so in essence it is all the same. LOL!

  31. Bhavani said

    Many more Happy Wishes Pepper!!! What a fantastic celebration with loved ones!! it is the best gift one can ask for!! Heres wishing you more and more of these 🙂


  32. Chiquita said

    Belated Happy Birthday Pepper. I’ve missed reading your blog. Surprises are always lovely and Mint obviously has a PHD in it. 28 will be great. Wishing you lots of luck with the house, prayers for Oregano and lots of love to you and Mint. Stop by sometime.

    • Pepper said

      Well this one wasn’t planned as much by Mint as the BFF. I would give her credit for initiating it.
      Thanks a lot. Will definitely swing by.

  33. Jack Point said

    Belated birthday wishes.

    “An average meal for 2 costs Rs. 150.”

    I am stunned, that is so cheap. Its about the average price of a cup of coffee in Colombo’s cafe’s.

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