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A nineteen year old with a camera in rural Norfolk. http://rosajoy.com

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Silver, wrists, stars and charms

I didn't have a birthday party back in March, so on September 18th, six months later, my friends and I went into the city to celebrate my 18th-and-a-half unbirthday. We met in Costa (the way we always have, and for the last time before we go our separate uni ways) and then walked to a quaint little Italian. I chose the lasagne and finished with scrumptious chocolate cake, we talked about the summer and things to come, and then we went back to mine. Kim and Lottie had baked me birthday cupcakes, complete with candles and singing, and it was perfect. The most wonderful moment of the evening, though, was when, sitting around the table in Pinocchio's before dessert, they gave me a present.

A few months ago, I lost - and then found - a bracelet which meant a lot to me. Not so long ago it went missing again, and I'm fairly certain it is somewhere on the campus of my university-to-be, and I will almost certainly never find it. Upset as I've been, the peace I made when I first lost it at the beginning of summer has stayed with me and I have come to terms with no longer having it.

However, unbeknown to me, as a gift for my unbirthday Jonny suggested my friends club together and buy me something of a replacement. What they gave me tonight was a silver charm bracelet, picked out by Alice, with six tiny charms chosen by the eleven of them together. Each one, Alice said, represents a part of me. A book, a pair of ballet shoes, a camera, a pot of pens, a violin, and a star.

What they could not know was that this bracelet not only lets me carry a part of myself, as my last one did, but also a part of each of them; my friends who thought of the idea and chose each charm. Now that summer is over and we have started to go our separate ways I am realising again how extraordinarily lucky I am to have friends like these in my life. This summer has been wonderful, and such a large part of it has been down to them. I have never been given such a beautiful, perfect gift.

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