Photo Essay: Celebrating My Birthday Beside Hangzhou’s West Lake

Last Monday, I wrote about how wedding anniversaries aren’t a big deal to my Chinese husband. But not birthdays — especially my birthday. We just celebrated and, once again, he approached as if it were a national holiday.

John still loves coming up with what he calls “birthday programs” for my special day and this year was no exception. First, he declared the day a vacation day for us — no work under any circumstances! — and shelved my laptop away. But with the oppressive sunshine burning up the city streets, it was also no time to be outdoors; instead we decided to watch movies on demand at home. We just pulled the curtains, cuddled up in bed, and pretended we were at the movie theater. Simple but fun!

Come evening, however, John and I dressed up to step out into town — or rather, step out beside the West Lake to marvel in the lotus leaves dappling the lake’s surface as well as the dazzling show of lights from the city.

Here are my favorite photos from the evening:

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Wishing you all a happy August!

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32 thoughts on “Photo Essay: Celebrating My Birthday Beside Hangzhou’s West Lake

  • August 3, 2015 at 11:25 am
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    Congrats! I envy you your quiet movie day and beautiful evening out.

    Reply
  • August 3, 2015 at 11:56 am
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    Happy birthday. Great pics.

    Reply
  • August 3, 2015 at 12:48 pm
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    生日快乐????!!!

    The second photo down, we have photos of Yan (my wife) and myself on that crooked bridge from 2005. You were indeed in a great place for a birthday!

    Reply
  • August 3, 2015 at 3:30 pm
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    Happy birthday! What a fun way to celebrate…a work-free day and movies in bed! You both look wonderful and the secnic pics are beautiful, too.

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    • August 3, 2015 at 11:42 pm
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      Thanks Charlotte! Yes, it was nice to have a forced vacation plus plenty of movies. We had a good time.

      Reply
  • August 3, 2015 at 4:02 pm
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    Happy birthday Jocelyn!! How nice of John to put so much effort into celebrating your birthday! He really is the perfect husband 😉

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  • August 3, 2015 at 5:34 pm
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    Happy people do a lot of things. They spend time expressing gratitude, cultivating optimism, practising kindness, nurturing loving relationships, committing to meaningful goals, savouring life’s little pleasures, and so on and so forth.
    Marc and Angel

    Congrats, Jocelyn.

    I like John’s shirt, it has that retro look to it.

    Reply
    • August 3, 2015 at 11:44 pm
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      Thanks Traveller at heart!

      Yeah, I love John’s shirt too — it’s one of my personal favorites!

      Reply
  • August 3, 2015 at 8:32 pm
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    So you are a Leo… You must have a strong character then. -;)

    Btw, happy birthday Jocelyn!

    Reply
  • August 4, 2015 at 2:42 am
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    Happy Birthday, Jocelyn.
    祝你生日快乐!!

    Reply
  • August 4, 2015 at 10:25 am
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    Beautiful birthday photos. You two look great. And I love the lotus pictures. It’s nice that John makes a big deal about your birthday. He’s celebrating the fact that you were born.

    Reply
  • August 4, 2015 at 4:23 pm
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    Both of you have flowery clothes, hehe! Was that intentional? 😛
    Happy birthday!!!

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    • August 4, 2015 at 9:40 pm
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      Thanks Marta! Ha ha, I didn’t even think about that! It really wasn’t, but nice that we coordinated well in the end!

      Reply
  • August 6, 2015 at 12:04 pm
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    Happy belated birthday! It sounds like you had a wonderful day. I love that you have your North face purse to complete your outfit… a hint of outdoorsy! It is totally my style as well! 🙂

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    • August 6, 2015 at 5:49 pm
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      Thanks leslie! Yeah, there’s a decidedly outdoorsy side to me (which might explain why I spend way too much of my time in very casual and sporty clothes!), so the purse is totally my style. Sounds like we’re style sisters? 😉

      Reply
  • August 6, 2015 at 11:22 pm
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    Happy birthday Jocelyn! It looks like you had a great day at a beautiul place. Hope you also got something nice to eat. 😀

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  • December 7, 2015 at 10:32 pm
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    It’s really beautiful, Jocelyn! You two must have a wonderful time together. Hangzhou really just have that “special” charm to it, esp. with the Legend of the White Snake and all the romanticized names of all its attractions.

    Reply

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