My Birthday Week–Fun, Frivolity, Madness & Sir Paul


Best. Concert. Ever. Sir Paul McCartney visits San Diego for the first time in 38 years. My daughter and I are just two in the audience of 40,000.


From an ant infestation on Sunday to Sir Paul McCartney eight days later, my birthday week ended with a bang and a whole lotta cashola spent.

Why a “Birthday Week” and not just a day, you might ask?

Because one day won’t do, no sir! You gotta have an entire week to celebrate with mirth and merriment! Here’s how the eight days went down:

Sunday: Attack of the ants. Apparently it’s been so hot and dry in these parts that the ants came inside and had a pool party in my tub, replete with Piña Coladas and Conga lines, and I could’ve sworn I heard one ant cry out, “Marco” while another shouted back, “Polo!”

Monday: I returned home to a drenched, water-soaked garage floor and the sound of “drip, drip, DRIP” coming from the water heater. It’s the big one, I thought. The mother of all household problems, only second to a massive earthquake. The dreaded water heater breakdown.

Drinking and dining at La Puerto in downtown San Diego.

Drinking and dining at La Puerto in downtown San Diego.

So, I did what any responsible homeowner would do: I panicked. Yada yada yada, $1,300 later, I have a new water heater and new regulator to control the water pressure. Plus I’ve made a new friend in the plumber who came out to my house that day, even though he was done for the day and about to go home to his wife’s steak dinner. He didn’t mind one bit spending four hours in my garage fixing all my problems, and believe it or not, didn’t charge me the nighttime rate. You may recall, not too long ago I complained about getting ripped off by another service technician, so meeting Bernard of Anderson Plumbing, Heating & Air was a real treat.

Tuesday: My actual b’day! I took the day off from work and met a friend for lunch, who simply pampered me with a gift bag of goodies and a gorgeously stunning cake from the primo of all bakeries, Extraordinary Desserts. We had such fun dining at the Nordies Cafe, followed by a little shopping spree of my own, with my favorite salesperson, Patrice. Then, that evening, I met up with more delightful friends at La Puerta, a trendy Mexican bar and restaurant where we dined on savory carnitas tacos and where I downed a couple of “frostilicious” Mojitos.

Wednesday: Went with a friend to see Tony Award-winning musical, “Kinky Boots,” featuring music by Cyndi Lauper. It was absolutely divine!

At the ER: An under-the-weather royal sits quietly awaiting for the vet to share results from the blood tests and x-rays.

At the ER: An under-the-weather royal sits quietly awaiting for the vet to share results from the blood tests and x-rays.

Thursday: Spent the evening in the animal hospital ER with Henry and one whining Maltipoo who shall remain nameless, but whose first initial begins with an “O” and whose last name is Twist. Yada yada yada, $540 later, all I can say is, poor Henry. His habit of eating cigarette butts is going to do him in, yet no matter how hard I try to keep him away from them on our walks, he manages to sniff them out. To muzzle or not to muzzle, that is the question. Is a muzzle the only way to help him break his nicotine habit, or should I let the guilt I feel in putting a muzzle on him (which makes him look like something out of “Silence of the Lambs”) win out?

What do you think?

Friday: Fire in an air traffic control complex in Chicago causes flight cancellations at both Chicago airports and elsewhere. Which means, my daughter’s flight home so that she can spend my birthday weekend with me temporarily falls by the wayside. Not knowing whether she’d get on another flight gets me down in the dumps.

Saturday: My daughter makes it home after all, and just in time for my b’day dinner. Hooray! With my son and cousins, too, we have a happy evening, indeed, and then settle down to watch the mid-season finale of our favorite new series, “Outlander.” Sigh.

Sunday: At last! My daughter and I go to see Sir Paul. I’d purchased the tickets back in July and have been waiting ever since. Love love love the Beatles! Saw John Lennon in concert at Madison Square Garden eons ago and now Paul. A magical night, nearly three hours of McCartney performing many of the Beatles’ fan faves, including “Hey Jude” and “Something,” which he did on ukulele, as a special tribute to George. I still get goosebumps thinking of that concert. Bliss, bliss, utter unadulterated bliss. Seeing the concert with my daughter was the icing on the cake. A simply fabulous, once in a lifetime experience, which we will never forget!

Well, that was the week that was. How was yours?

Stay tuned next week when the “Doctor” is finally in.   Yes, that’s when I, Dr. Monica, make my debut, answering the questions that have been nagging at you and driving you to distraction.  Never fear, the “doctor” is here! (Or at least will be next week, ahem.) It’s never too late to submit your question. Just add it in the comment box below, and remember, the more inane the question, the better. For I’m no expert, I just have common sense!

37 thoughts on “My Birthday Week–Fun, Frivolity, Madness & Sir Paul

  1. Happy BDAY, Monica! I’m somersaulting for you. 🙂

    My week hardly compared to yours. Your week sounds like a well-deserved blast all around. I’m glad you got to enjoy some of your faves, despite the costs you incurred on the home and royalty front. (Those royal dudes cost $).

    My week ended, or shall I say began, on a beautiful note. We had our home blessed by our pastor who happens to be a dear friend and confidante of ours. The service was beautiful. Over 60 folk gathered in our backyard and enjoyed a small, intimate service. It was a wonderful time. Felt grounding, standing there amidst the trees, with our hands joined.

    I say you continue the celebration till month-end. Go all out!

  2. Oh, poor puppy! Smokin’? The bill? A little less smokin’! Or maybe more so, as the case may be!

    So, yeah, I’ve been gone all smokin’ summer. We moved across town but just got our internet two days ago–I kid you not! LONGGGGG STORY!

    Hope you had an awesome Birthday! Shall we carry it on into week 2? Heck, how about a whole month? LOL

    Hugs from Ecuador,

    • Kathy, I feel like I’ve just had a blast from the past. You’ve been gone such a LONG time! I’m doing double takes and side splits as I write (okay, maybe not the latter), but I’m so EXCITED to hear from you again! I saw that you posted. I’ve been crazy busy working on a story for Gay San Diego newspaper, but I will stop by in the next day or so. I assume your post will explain your, ahem, sabbatical?

      And yes, I’m all for extending my birthday to Week 2. Ha!

  3. Happy Birthday! So sorry about all the $ka-ching$! I felt like a spectator with all the goings on. You don’t let anything get you down, do you girl? No one was more deserving of the airlines and air traffic control to come through to bring your daughter to you. And to listen to Paul, yes, pure “unadulterated bliss” for sure. Sounds like a spectacular week and I wish you many more happy returns.
    There’s a saying here, “Don’t mess with TX.” You tell Henry to be good and “Don’t mess with that lady from TX” who is shaking her finger in good old fashioned disapproval for his penchant to eat cig butts.

    • Georgette, if the week had ended with the water heater breakdown instead of Sir Paul, I might not be as cheerful. But Paul seemed to make everything bad that happened palatable. It’s only money!

  4. I’m all for extended celebrations, Monica. Okay, so it wasn’t all cake and concerts, but it was certainly memorable. Two years ago, my birthday was 12/12/12. I’ll be damned if that didn’t merit a week of festivities. Sending belated birthday wishes your way.

    • Thanks, Kim! I dig you, too!

      I can now say I’ve seen them both. Like bookends, really. I was in high school when I saw John and now Paul, all these years later. The Beatles are everything to me, and always will be. Love love love them.

  5. Happy Birthday, Monica — I’m all for celebrating an entire week! Sorry to hear about your costly plumbing problems (they’re never cheap, are they??) and poor Sir Henry’s disgusting habit. Really, for a royal, surreptitiously downing cigarette butts isn’t very proper behavior at all (not unlike my own handsome companion, who has a penchant for downing poopy tidbits!)

    Glad you and your daughter enjoyed the concert — color me a bit on the greenish side because I’ve never seen any of the Beatles live!!

    • I bought him a muzzle and he wore it a couple of times, which absolutely broke my heart, and my son’s, too. So now I have to be vehement about watching him like a hawk and keeping an eye out for the dreaded butts. I cannot afford another visit to the ER! As for the Beatles, I feel blessed that I got to see John and Paul. Maybe not together, but still, it doesn’t get any better than this.

  6. Oh my gosh Monica, so much went down and it was costly too … In spite of it all you had a wonderful celebration. I am so happy your daughter was able to make it and you saw Paul McCartney – how fantastic to be in that audience. I’m thrilled you pampered yourself with friends and family. Nothing like it and yes! one day does not suffice. It has to be a week. Mine is at the end of this month. I plan on celebrating the whole month.. Starting with my annual mammogram – yikes.

    Now, um, this nicotine habit needs to disappear. Not sure royalty deserves a muzzle, maybe threaten to take away his royal food supply.

    Okay, so can you feel my excitement? You can’t yet. But the minute you mentioned Outlander, I became really excited. I, I’m sure like millions of others have waited for this book to become a film. Have followed Diana Gabaldon’s Facebook page like a stalker, watched the casting and well, um, had an opinion on everything they did. Not that my expert opinion was needed. Anyway, I love the actors, for every role has been well thought out. Tobias Menzies who simultaneously plays Frank and Black Jack is brilliant. We have to talk more. Cannot believe I have to wait until April for the next lot.

    • I could’ve said a month, but I didn’t want to appear greedy. Besides, there’s something not right about extending my birthday into October. Since it comes toward the end, one week is about all I get.
      MM, have you noticed how similar our taste in TV and books are?? Of course you love Outlander. I love it and that’s reason enough! You and I can get together and have a marathon on any show of your choosing or mine, and I think it’s safe to say, we’ll both love whatever either of us chooses. I want to be Mrs. Jamie Frasier!! He’s a hottie! Oh, and I want to visit Scotland, especially after watching the series. Breathtaking!

      • Oh Monica, yes! yes!, what a marathon that would be. A glass of wine – although I become tired with wine now, that’s so weird. Maybe a margarita or two. Did you watch Scandal? well, of course you did. I can’t wait for tonight.
        Oh my Jamie Fraser – Sam Heughan is exactly the way I imagined Jamie from the books as is Claire.He really is lovely to watch isn’t he?
        Isn’t Scotland lush? Since I wasn’t in Venice for the Clooney wedding, I will pretend I’m off to Scotland soon.

  7. Happy birthday! Yes. Milk your birthday for every penny it deserves. Hope you got spoilt!

    Damn plumbing. It’s the most inconvenient thing to break down. Glad you found a good plumber to sort out the mess.

  8. Yes well…….

    You had a varied but mainly enjoyable week, sorry to hear about the water heater, not cheap things when they go wrong.

    Pleased you had a super birthday with friends and family that’s always nice. My birthday is at the end of November when I again catch you up age wise, no idea what I will do on that day, normally I just tootle along as per normal.

    The concert with Paul McCartney sounds like an experience not to be missed, not one of my favourites but he is certainly a professional and good at his craft. Plus of course you can’t beat live music.

    As for young Henry kicking the habit, all I can say is you should pay him more then he would not have to try and live on the tips!! I know, I know it was a poor joke, but the best I can manage. Personally I am not keen on putting a muzzle on a dog unless they are known to likely cause problems..

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