Tonight, I’m to go to Bath–not a tub, but Bath, England for my birthday. I’ve been extended an invitation (by silver platter) from my good cousin to partake of the pleasing waters to restore my aging and ailing body. And I cannot believe they wrote THAT in the invitation! My aging and ailing body??? EXCUZZ ME? PLEAZZZ! About a year ago, we decided to trick my sister Jacqueline during her birthday. We packed her bags, swimming suit and everything else she could possibly need for a night and deposited it across the street–don’t worry, it was at a bed and breakfast. Then we pretended to take pictures around the neighborhood until we reached the inn. And that’s where I pretended to get brave. After all, Jacqueline had ALWAYS wanted to see the inn and why shouldn’t we ask for a tour? I reached the front desk and (wink wink) demanded one. The clerk told me we couldn’t go on a tour until the next day–apparently someone didn’t get the surprise birthday party memo–but I thought I’d jog his memory anyway. Jacqueline kept edging away, pleading for us to come back the next day and I kept arguing with the clerk that we WANTED A TOUR NOW…and most specifically a tour of the King’s room. The clerk smugly told me that room was taken and I took a deep breath and blew the surprise: “Yeah, it’s taken by us!” He gave many quick and confused bows and gave us some cookies, which greatly mollified me. Then we led a bewildered Jacqueline to our new quarters. Of course that surprise birthday party set a precedent for creating a monster of surprise birthday parties ever after, each of us trying to outdo the other. After dressing up like schoolgirls, taking the Hogwart’s express to shop for wands and antidotes, and meeting up with a troubled Voldemort in Ogden–it’s gotten to the point where some of our friends (namely H–) won’t reveal their birthdays. So now it’s my turn. I’m to bring a hat and gloves suitable for non-alcoholic non-caffeinated non-tea in a place called Bath which isn’t really Bath. And since I’m the last of the conspirators to celebrate a birthday after that ill-fated night so long ago, it shall be a party to end all parties, I believe. And despite it all, I’m giddy with excitement at the thought of embarrassing myself, so I’d best get my ailing and aging body ready!