Happy simple birthday

Some people love birthdays, some dislike them, others simply ignore them. Regardless, they happen and will continue happening. We might as well enjoy them, yeah?

My birthday was quite recently and as is quite usual with people that were born during summer periods, I was away from home on holidays.

I happened to be spending a few days in Eivissa, one of my favourite places to hang out and relax. In my opinion,  and contrary to what many people thing, the island has many interesting sides that do not have much to do with its partying fame.

So, say it is your birthday and…

You enjoy a delicious curry that reminds you of eastern London in the Ancient People restaurant, away from the bustling town center. Sit at the bar while sipping a cold Cobra beer, then discuss with the owner the level of hotness of their spicy chicken Madras, “It’s like London, you know”. Amazing rice comes together with quite decent curry and large nan bread and the moments drag on until the mango lassi is there to help you end them in style.

You get some unexpected calls from loved ones far away. Those are always welcome.

You taste a great ‘paella mixta’ in one of my preferred eating venues ever, the great Ca Na Ribes, in a lovely street of the Santa Eulàlia town. While you wait for the main course, you have a nice healthy salad and you eat as much “all i oli” sauce on traditional balearic-style bread as you can. The restaurant is decorated in a way that recalls a sparse forest, with plenty of creeping plants and many overhanging greenery. The peaceful and uncompromising atmosphere are nice complements to excellent food.

Paella Ca Na Ribes

You unwrap some presents that you kept unopened in your luggage. The temptation to open them before their time is not easy to overcome but you prevail. You really get two gifts, one on the day you are given the present and one on the day you open it, at the same price!

You thrive in the calm company of old friends, of the kind that is never completely lost and every encounter is lavender fresh. Discussion stretches for hours, like the equally welcome silences, which are followed by politics, sports, technology, entertainment, gossip, food, girls, friends, music, servers, jokes, restaurants, travel, places, work, languages, anecdotes, computers, synonyms, poetry, lyrics, comedy, hobbies, adventure, the past, the present and the future. After that perhaps some quiet and finish it off with a jog, hopping around the convenient urban obstacles of Vila town.

You relax with the excellent service in the Nanking, a chinese food refuge where cold Catalan beer is mixed with simple oriental dishes. While eating spring rolls you idly watch the night time workers order stuff to go and wait patiently, thinking of the long shift ahead. The staff welcome clientele with a smile and local elder men eat alone while leafing the paper and re-reading the sports sections. The hubhub of the streets just below is well forgotten now.

You doze in the amazing Ses Salines beach, just past the salty flats, stopping near Sa Trinxa to bathe in the fiery sun and balm yourself in the cool chill out music that oozes out of the seaside bar. Local waitresses speak to you in fluid Catalan and seem to merge against the creamy sand, they belong there. Cold heinekens sweat condensation in the heat and reflect the black-clad staff girls’ thin frames while they hop from client to client, occasionally barking rapid-fire chatter amongst themselves. Time drags on and on.

You remember days past, recalling times more than ten years gone. Can’t believe college is finished and many projects are now complete. So many things have been said and done. Can’t believe who isn’t here with us anymore and pleasantly surprised at who is still with us. In the short hours my birthday is well over, the sun is up and I just take a photo. Why not? Simple tastes are better.

Eivissa sun

Who says birthdays are boring? ^_^

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