Nobody likes you when you’re 23

The title of this post is purely because I just turned 23 and I love making somewhat relevant musical references, not because I feel unloved. If there is another song referencing being 23, please let me know so I can expand my age-related references!

This birthday felt like a lot of firsts. I’ve never had a birthday anywhere other than Wellington, NZ. Every birthday has been prefaced with a prayer for clear skies, which was usually answered. This year, for the first time, I had my birthday in winter, complete with an opaque white sky and even snow (snow is still so exciting to me – you can’t understand how exciting snow is unless you’ve grown up in a place where it doesn’t happen). Lox and I are currently in Winnipeg, Manitoba, so we spent the day at the Assiniboine Park Zoo where I saw polar bears for the first time ever, as well as arctic foxes, sloths, and sleepy red pandas.

For my birthday dinner, we went to Boon Burger, a vegan burger place, which was exactly what my heart craved. In keeping with the theme of first times, it was the first birthday I’ve spent as a vegetarian, and I’m still totally happy with this new-for-me lifestyle. We finished the festivities with ice cream, which wasn’t new, but it was perfect.

As I’ve always been home for my birthday, this was also the first year where I didn’t spend it with my family. My parents FaceTimed me while visiting my grandmother with my brother, sister-in-law, and niece, so I still got to see most of my family. I also usually spend the day with friends – being a kiwi with a December birthday means classes are usually done, so my friends and I are nearly always free – so it was also a little different to not see anyone other than Lox (fortunately, I’m a little bit fond of him, so it wasn’t a bad difference).

I don’t know exactly what 23 holds for me, but I’m looking forward to the vague plans I have for it. I have a few months left in Canada, a whirlwind European holiday, and then back to reality in NZ – where I will continue figuring out what on earth I want to do with my life.

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