Every July 12th unfolds the same way for me. An early morning call from my mother, a day of thoughtful messages from friends, and a few small indulgences like a haircut and tonight’s yoga class. Birthdays are strewn with rituals both reassuring and gratifying, but like life, each year has its own twist.
It was clear a shift was underway about a month ago when I started jotting down birthday ideas for my parents. Normally I ask for one of three things ~ a massage, a car detail or a house cleaning. These are the kind of presents I like best; ones I’m too cheap to treat myself to but that leave me feeling renewed.
This year, however, is different. Three years into farm life and I’ve figured out a few things I ‘need’. Tools.
Need, of course, is a tricky word. After all there’s a beautiful tradition of sharing equipment and tools among small family farmers. And my very good friend has every tool known to man and is happy to loan them to me. So do I really ‘need’ the tools?
Well, sometimes a girl’s just gotta have her own. And so tonight I will sit on my front porch, pour a bourbon and ginger, give thanks that my mom is still able to call me every birthday and that my friends still think enough of me to share kind messages. And then I will grin ear to ear, admiring my new battery charger, air compressor, grinder and propane torch. Who knew forty-eight would be such a cool year?