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:







Wishing you all a happy August!

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32 Replies to “Photo Essay: Celebrating My Birthday Beside Hangzhou’s West Lake”

  1. 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!

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

    1. 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? 😉

  5. 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.

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