I just celebrated my (mumble-mumble)-1st birthday this past Friday. Yup. During quarantine. During the economic shutdown. Last year, my birthday looked like this: a group of 10 of my closest friends met at my home for a drink, then we hopped in Ubers to A favorite Mediterranean restaurant where we all ate off giant shared plates of hummus and passed around the hookah before meeting another 50 of my friends and acquaintances at a bowling alley/bar for some games and drinks. In today’s reality, none of that is possible or okay.
First off, by adding me to the pre-dinner-drinks, that’s already 11 people—more than are allowed to get together during social distancing. Then we got in Ubers together—in close proximity. Five of us packed into a little car. For the record, Uber and Lyft have suspended their shared ride services for now, in response to COVID-19. Then we all dipped our bread in the same platter of hummus and baba ghanoush, now knowing who has washed their hands and when. Then we shared a hookah, putting our mouths on the same little spout someone else just did. This style of birthday party just simply couldn’t happen today, and may not happen again for a very long time.
Fast forward to March 27, 2020. I’m in a cabin in Vail, Colorado, hundreds of miles from where I typically live. We came here to escape the over-run hospitals of the major city in which I live, because my partner already has compromised lungs, and if he gets sick, we can’t risk being told there are no ventilators available. My birthday, as you can imagine, looked a bit different this year. But we made it work, as many will have to whose birthdays fall during the coming weeks. Here are ways to celebrate your birthday during the COVID-19 quarantine.
Make a quarantine cake
The first thing you have to do is embrace the chaos and accept that this birthday will be a bit different. So, if you can’t get to a bakery for your favorite cake, make a quarantine cake out of your odds and ends items. For me that looked like a baking pan with one layer of Oreos, one layer of frosting, and one layer of fresh strawberries, all with whipped cream on top. What’s your quarantine cake? Hey, at least you’ll never forget it.