Balthazar, London

It was bustling. Waiters slid between the booths in their crisp white shirts, skinny black ties. The amber lighting was low and soft, lazy fans circulated a slight breeze. The music was something from the 60s maybe, something frank Sinatra would sing to. The buzz of conversation was loud, but comforting. The people were mostly pretty (or perhaps I just viewed them that way in a place like this). Men in dinner jackets, ladies with perfect hair laughing over expensive bordeaux.

Duke got us reservations for my first birthday. I wasn't dressed for the occasion, but it felt decadent all the same. The handsome mosaic tiling; the banquettes a deep carmine red; a gorgeously expensive bottle of wine... The food was delightful (the chocolate fondant divine). I felt spoilt, and also a little out of my depth. Places like this is where the rich of London come to eat. And there I was with day old eyeliner smudged in ways I probably should have fixed first.

The waiter refired my starter because I didn't realise that it came covered in bacon (and he was so gracious about it, too). The two old ladies next to me sang Happy Birthday when the waitress bought out dessert with candle, but messed up the song. The bathrooms were hidden up the stairs, and oh, the tiles the tiles the tiles. Too charming.

It was a delightful birthday dinner. Loved it. Loved it loved it loved it.