1969 was a great year for many reasons in particular:
- Richard Nixon became the 37th president of the USA.
- The Beatles gave their last public performance.
- Boeing 747 became the largest aircraft and made its first commercial flight.
- Concorde took its first test flight.
- Sir Wally Herbert reaches the North Pole and becomes the first man to cross the frozen surface of the Arctic Ocean.
- Judy Garland died.
- Neil Armstrong was the first man to walk on the moon.
- The halfpenny ceased to be legal tender.
- Monty Python’s Flying Circus aired on BBC One for the first time.
- Lundy Island was given over to the National Trust.
Oh, and not forgetting another important event! At 2.15 pm on 2 August a baby girl weighing in at 8.12lb came into the world! She was longer than the average baby, but then she always like to be different!
Yes of course that girl was me. I cannot believe that I have been around now for 50 years. It feels so old, but time seems to have flown by. It isn’t until you stop and look back on your life that the reality really hits you. If you have read my previous blogs, you will know that I am actually ok about being 50. I’m in a really good place in my life, and even though life throws me curve balls, I know with my hubby, together we will get through it.
I’m celebrating the day with some of my closest friends. We are off to Devon to relive probably one of my only real memories of my birthday as a child. When I say I don’t remember any others, it isn’t because I didn’t have a good childhood. Far from it. I had 2 of the best parents ever.
As my birthday falls in August, we were always on holiday, so the day tended to blend into the holiday more. Mum always got me a cake with candles on and they made a fuss of me, but could I tell you what else I did, then no. That was except for 1 very particular birthday.
We were in Devon and out to Ilfracombe for the day. There was a boat in the harbour, so Dad suggested we go have a look around it. What I didn’t know was that mum and dad had booked a trip to Lundy Island as a surprise for my birthday. That day has stayed with me forever. Not least because my parents won’t let me forget it! Not because of the Island, or the treat. Oh no! It is because as a very confident child, I wouldn’t allow anyone to help me board the boat! Splash – I was in the water! Yep that was me. Miss accident prone! As we didn’t have any spare clothes with me, I just had to dry off. Thankfully it was a warm day.
On the way back, when offered help, I declined again. I wasn’t going to fall in twice was I? Oh no of course I wasn’t!! Splash – yes in I went again!! My parents love retelling that story to whoever will hear it! Along with a few more incidents such as my zip line experience, which I won’t go into today, but still have the scars!
Despite that, I have such happy memories of that day. The excitement of being on a boat for the first time. Seeing the birds and looking around the Island was so special. It seemed only right then that for my 50th I should go back and revisit the Island. Plus with it being 50 years under National Trust it seemed meant to be. I refuse this time though to fall in, so if help is offered, I intend to take it.
Sadly, I couldn’t get a boat actually on my birthday, so we are going the next day. I don’t mind because the whole weekend is my birthday. Well it isn’t everyday you turn 50 is it! I’m going to be milking it.
We have our own boat. Not the normal ferry. I have been liaising with Colin from Lundy Charters. We are going from Clovelly this time, which is apparently closer than from Ilfracombe. I am hoping to see Puffins, seals and dolphins, so will have my camera at the ready. I’m just hoping the sea is calm after the night before! We have a Thai Restaurant booked and no doubt there will be lots of bubbles involved!
We are starting the celebrations off tonight with a meal out. Just me and hubby. The question is, do I open his present and card tonight or take it with me? I’ve said I don’t know. I will have to decide later, I think.
We then head to Westward Ho for 3 nights with friends. My babies are staying at home as they don’t allow dogs on Lundy Island. I will miss them dearly, but they will be well looked after.
I don’t know what else we will be doing over the next few days. That is what makes it fun. Maybe fish and chips on the seafront. Our apartment overlooks the sea, so I’m excited to be able to wake up on my birthday looking at the ocean. Hubby doesn’t know it yet, but I will be expecting a cup of tea made of course by him, while I sit on the balcony admiring the view.
There are 8 of us in total, so whatever we do, I know it will be a good laugh.
Over the 50 years, I have learnt that if you have good family and friends, everything else isn’t as important. I’m the happiest I have ever been. I don’t know what the future will bring. I’m living for today. What I do know is that I have some amazing people around me. I feel the luckiest person alive to have my hubby, my fabulous parents and family. I have some great friends. Every one of them is different, but that is what makes them special.
I’m actually really excited about the weekend. I’m sad my parents won’t be there to spend it with me, but I will call them on the day. I never miss speaking to them on my birthday. They are amazing parents and love them dearly. No doubt I will be calling them a few times of the weekend. I know they will be waiting to hear if I made it on the boat and back without falling in!
So, I am embracing 50. I am thankfully for the memories I have already made, and looking forward to the new ones I will make in the future.
My advice is, don’t worry about the little things. Treasure those that are close to you and live life to the full. I’ve made mistakes over the last 50 years, but I don’t regret them. If I hadn’t lived the life I had, I wouldn’t be where I am today.