Friday, 21 June 2013
A 30th birthday seems like a momentous occasion.
I had honestly expected that I would dread it - that as it approached I'd start seeing my life pass before my eyes, frantically calculating whether or not I'd have accomplished everything I thought I would by 30. I figured my birthday would be passed mourning the loss of my twenties.
In actuality, none of that happened. I didn't dread 30 at all; in fact, I was sort of looking forward to it. My twenties were great - filled with change and aspirations, uncertainty and fun. There were also stresses as I lived pay cheque to pay cheque paying down my student loans and a lot of time wondering if I had chosen the right path for myself. By my late-twenties, I had sort of let that all go. Things came together and those that didn't weren't a big deal. I was more relaxed yet more confident in myself than I had ever been. So with that, I gladly bid farewell to that decade, ready to welcome another.
I decided much earlier in the year that I would celebrate 30 as opposed to mourn 20 and living in Europe meant there was no better way than jetting off elsewhere for the occasion. I pondered locations and experiences but ultimately decided I wanted a relaxed yet luxurious getaway, just the two of us. I didn't want to feel like we were 'traveling' yet I wanted to see something new. Thus, Versailles became the frontrunner.
I've been to Paris twice before and both times missed Versailles for one reason or another and while we wanted to visit the palace, I didn't want to be in bustling Paris. I had never heard of anyone staying in the town of Versailles itself but upon further research, it seemed like the perfect decision.
We stayed in an ultra-luxurious hotel, we visited the palace, wandered the stunning gardens, dined in the quaint centre of town and I felt completely pampered throughout. Due to Joe's business trip, we had to celebrate a couple of days in advance but he surprised me with champagne and flowers delivered to our room and dinner reservations in town as well as a brand new wide angle lens for my SLR.
For someone who often doesn't make a big deal out of birthdays, this was completely extravagant yet so perfect.
(PS. My 29th Birthday in Gabon)