|Our noisy neighbour|
I originally imagined that my thirtieth would be spent in sunny Spain, sipping non-alcoholic sangria and relaxing with a book during the day, followed by flamenco dancing in the evening. Instead, it was spent stuck in Brighton Marina still trying to get our stern frame welded up, under the constant racket made by the dredger operating nearby, while lugging a load of heavy tubular stainless steel around. Nevertheless, I had a really nice day.
Kate snuck out of bed well before my alarm went off, to put banners and balloons all over Firebird's exterior. On the inside, she made the table look nice with shiny stars and other table confetti, neatly
arranged my cards and presents, and woke me up with the sizzling of sausages in the pan.
|Firebird in birthday mode|
After that, it was time to get to work! We had to make several trips back and forth to the welder's workshop, to take him the parts we needed welding on, and to bring the frame back for fittings. The good news is that the frame is coming along nicely and is going to be way better than it was before, so even though it's causing us a huge delay, we're just glad to be making progress with it.
For lunch, we found a really nice pub behind the marina where they do a selection of unusual burgers. I had water buffalo and Kate had kangaroo.
After more hefting of metal in the afternoon, Kate took me for a birthday surprise, which turned out to be a trip to the local cinema. We totally love going to the cinema, so it was the perfect way to relax after our hard work. We watched The Mortal Instruments, which was a good one about daemons, vampires and that sort of thing.
To round the day off, we legged it to the sea wall just in time to catch the sun setting, then back to Firebird for dinner, birthday cake and to watch birthday wishes that friends had recorded and given to us before we left London, which was a really nice thing for them to do. They did videos all the way up to 37, so we've got a lot of cruising to do before we have a lonely birthday!
|Sunset over Brighton|
|D'Oh! It doesn't quite fit|
Today (the day after my birthday), disaster struck with our latest fitting of the stern frame. There isn't enough clearance between the life-raft holder and the boom, which is a bit of a nightmare because we'll have to take the whole lot back to the workshop, but at least welder, Bob, didn't sound phased on the phone when I told him about the problem. He has a whole heap of experience and I have every bit of confidence that he will be able to sort it out for us. Hopefully this will be the last time we have to struggle along the footpath by the marina, trying not to drop the heavy, polished frame!
|The birthday boy|
|Mum's cake. Mmm, delicious!|