On the right tracks with a birthday breakfast – Janet Christie’s Mum’s the Word

Why breakfast is best for a birthday bash
Mum's the Word. Pic: Getty ImagesMum's the Word. Pic: Getty Images
Mum's the Word. Pic: Getty Images

Finally we’ve found the solution to dragging the elusive family together to celebrate birthdays - breakfast in a cafe. Hit them early in the day when they’re vulnerable and drag them blinking into the light before they’ve had time to disappear - and who doesn’t need breakfast?

The birthday is mine and the venue across the road from the flat where they were all born and took their first steps.

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“Remember running up this street to school every day,” I say as we gaze out of the huge plate glass windows in a hipster cafe in what was once a row of shops and bars with topless dancers, but the only thing being smashed these days is the avocado.

“Yeah,” says Eldest.

“You insisted on walking yourselves because you said I was ruining your lives by taking you,” I remind him.

“Everyone else got to walk themselves,” says Middle, his long-time accomplice.

"Well WE didn’t,” says Eldest. They followed us,” he says nodding at me and Other Parent. “Weirdos. That’s why we ran.”

And because it’s never a family gathering without the dragging up of long-held grudges, Youngest enters the fray.

“Yeah. But at least you only got followed by them. I was a child All On My Own ‘cos everyone else was ADULTS, so SHE held my hand till I was in P7. That’s even worse” she says.

“Adults? I was six when you were born,” says Middle.

“And I was seven,” says Eldest.

“It was always four onto one,” she says, “being pulled along by my hood and scary death rides in supermarket trollies pushed by youse, OK that was fun. And are we going to do that thing where we go round the table with everyone telling what they’ve been doing but stopping before we get to me, even though I always have the most interesting news?” She delivers her ‘but now I’m Leader of the Pack’ glare.

“See, it was character building,” I mutter behind a menu.

“Spoilt,” lobs in Middle, who knows which buttons to press.

“Look!” I say quickly to break it up, “Tram lines. It’s only taken three decades. Same time it’s taken to grow three children.”

“Well, there was the crash of 2008 - that put everything back,” says Other Parent.

And silence reigns as the kidults try to remember their culpability in 2008. Why put them straight?