I don't particularly like my own birthday. It always feels like a forced excuse to do something extraordinary. Occasionally, perhaps once every 6 years, I find this amusing, but usually I prefer to spend my birthday as every other day. I won't go out of my way to keep it a secret, but those who know me know that I don't need all the extra fuss.
That's why this year was an awesome birthday: just hanging out at home with a friend and going to a restaurant with the girlfriend. Things I'd do on any other day, and that's how it should be. Spending it normally is like confirming to yourself the current state of your life. As it so happens, the current state of my life is one I am ultra pleased with.
This year I went on many trips with my girlfriend, had an epic cycling trip and bought a car. It's also the year in which I've gathered unequivocal evidence that buying a house around London is fucking expensive and that I just can't afford one quite yet. But I've got a clear goal now and I can see that path that I must take. During my early years in London I deliberately left the future as open as possible given my constraints, hoping that the 'one true path' would show itself. It took a while, but it did. The next steps in the life of the me that I designed for myself are ridiculously clear to see. I've removed nearly all ambiguity I used to have about nearly every major life decision that I need to make in the next few years, or even decade.
The design of my immediate future life is complete, now it's time to start building it. Or rather, to start grinding away to gather resources, but even that can be a wonderful thing if you've got a true goal to aim for. Make it so!