I turned 30 two weeks ago. I am not one of those people who dreaded turning 30, although I wasn’t particularly excited about it either. On one hand, I’m glad my twenties are behind me. Although I had a lot of fun, my early twenties were pretty unstable and at times a little messy. On the other hand, in turning 30 I had to look adulthood in the face and figure out what I am doing with my life.
Anyway, my gift to myself this year was to shove all these existential questions aside and get down to the business of celebrating in style. Because I have great and patient friends who admirably tolerate and indulge in my crazy desires, I turned my 30th birthday party into a three-day festival of gluttony.
After a crazy week at work, I flew out of the office as soon as the clock hit 6:00pm in order to meet Pete and Emily at the Kennedy Center for some National Symphony Orchestra action. One of our running pals works at the Kennedy Center and offered us comp tickets for that evening’s performance as it was undersold. On the program was Strauss’ Metamorphosen and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, the Eroica. Beethoven is my favorite composer of all time and the Eroica may be my favorite symphony of all time. The NSO’s performance was really outstanding and got my birthday celebration off to a great start.
As my birthday was officially on Friday (February 3), I had a day long celebration including going off campus for a nice pizza lunch with a former co-worker who also bought the office two dozen cupcakes for our afternoon staff meeting. She really didn’t need to do that because my office had a HUGE chocolate cake from Baked & Wired to snack on as well. My office managed to polish off half the cupcakes and half of the cake so I brought the cake back to my apartment where the last few slices still sit nearly stale in the refrigerator. That evening, I had dinner at Proof with a small group of friends. After a round of cocktails, six of us split appetizers of gnocchi with butternut squash, brussels sprouts and kale in a brown butter sauce, the pho terrine, and a cheese board. I ordered the spaghetti and meatballs for my appetizer. Though a simple dish the meatballs were made of duck, foie gras, and pork, a most decadent and amazing combination that made the dish anything but ordinary. Our table also split two bottles of D-Cubed Zinfandel, a really wonderful smooth wine that everyone enjoyed. Finally, an order of the delicious profiteroles arrived with one singular candle. Each person got half of a profiterole to tie up the dinner before we walked back to my apartment and dug into some leftover birthday cake. That was truly the best dinner I have had in a very long time.
Although my birthday took place on a Friday and no one could possibly say I did not celebrate the occasion properly, I pushed the big party to Saturday night. The one thing I wanted for my birthday was for all my friends to be together in one place getting drunk with me. Since a good chunk of them run with me on Saturday morning, I knew Friday night shenanigans were not a possibility, plus I also wanted to do a long run Saturday morning. So after a morning long run and an afternoon of primping, roommate Alex and I made a delicious steak dinner to prep for a night of partying. To get everything started off right, we opened a bottle of William Hill Cabernet Sauvignon to enjoy with the steak. By 9:30pm my friends and I gathered at Blackbyrd Warehouse and I had an old fashioned in hand. It was great to have all my friends together and good time were had by all, especially the birthday gal. Turning 30 couldn’t have been more fun, or delicious.