When it comes to special occasions, I mostly talk here about Kelley’s birthdays and our various when-we-met, when-we-married, when-I-moved-here anniversaries, and only bring up my own birthday when it’s one of those end-in-zero-or-5 milestones.

Posts usually come with photos but frankly I’m crap at taking selfies—I usually look something between bored and homicidal. Case in point, my most recent selfie, taken one afternoon in late July about an hour after the third bad-thing-in-one-day event.

Okay, technically still 61 here, but close enough

In my defence, they were pretty bad things: Kelley got laid off with no warning, I found out I had a fractured cuboid bone (and it fucking hurt), and then on the way out of the MRI suite (because of cuboid bone) I had my first-ever wheelchair crash, in which I hit a misaligned paving stone at speed, went flying into the road headfirst, and was landed on by my 40kg wheelchair. I was *grumpy*.

So here’s a better one, a screen cap I took a couple of hours ago during a Zoom meeting. I hadn’t been up very long (do you get up early on your birthday?) so I’m a bit blank, but like all Zoom pix it’s flattering—I always use the ‘touch up my appearance’ setting at about 25% strength, and the direct light smoothes out my skin. But, hey, it’s my birthday. I get to cheat a bit if I want.

Early morning Zoom—too early, really, for one’s birthday

The rest of my day will be spent working on Menewood (I finally have editorial notes, yay!) followed by more video chats, business and personal, then a lovely evening of Champagne and caviar on the deck with Kelley. The weather looks absolutely gorgeous for the end of September and we intend to take every advantage of our pretty flowers and ice-cold wine.

May you have an equally lovely day.