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Turning 30 during a pandemic: from virtual parties to seaside strolls, how these people are celebrating milestone birthdays

 

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On hold: Adrian Farrell with his fiancée Gillian Deane and their son Lorcan Farrell

On hold: Adrian Farrell with his fiancée Gillian Deane and their son Lorcan Farrell

On hold: Adrian Farrell with his fiancée Gillian Deane and their son Lorcan Farrell

As Covid-19 continues to spread across Ireland, those who were due to celebrate major milestones have had to think outside the box.

From virtual parties to seaside strolls, people who have had to unfortunately cancel events are still finding ways to enjoy themselves.

It may not be what they envisaged, but they're maintaining a positive outlook while prioritising the safety of friends and family.

When Gillian Deane's fiancé suggested having their wedding around her 30th birthday, she anticipated a week of double celebrations.

But both parties have now been put on hold as the nation battles against the coronavirus.

Gillian turned 30 on Wednesday and was due to tie the knot with her partner Adrian Farrell surrounded by loved ones on Friday.

The couple, from Belmullet, Co Mayo, have instead found themselves social distancing in the west.

While it was devastating having to call off the wedding, Gillian is grateful they were able to secure another date for their big day after liaising with the hotel and various suppliers.

It's now due to go ahead in November on Friday 13.

"I know it's a superstitious day but if we can survive the coronavirus, I'm sure we can survive Friday the 13th," she said.

"In the lead-up to the wedding, we realised this isn't what it was meant to be about, it's meant to be a time of enjoyment and happiness, not stress and worry.

"We want to be able to have our friends and family around us without worrying.

"We know we're very lucky, we live in the west and our rent isn't colossal, it's affordable and we've no mortgage at the moment.

"We used to always give out about being isolated in Belmullet, but we're glad of it now.

"There are people who are seriously sick and that puts it into perspective… I'm laughing one minute and crying the next.

"There's a group of us who are all due to turn 30 around this time so we're not cancelling the celebrations, we're just postponing them."

Other people celebrating big milestones have also had to think alternatively.

Amanda Lacey had organised a big 30th birthday party in a cocktail bar in Dublin and will now instead be celebrating at home with her nine-year-old daughter, Jade.

"I've stocked up on decorations for it so I plan on decorating the place and making it as special as possible by going back to basics with a cake and a little tea party, and maybe crack open the vino, who knows."

Amanda, who works with recruitment company Indeed, has been working at home for the last three weeks, so is well adapted by now.

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Amanda Lacey has been working from home for three weeks and plans to enjoy a few tipples with friends virtually

Amanda Lacey has been working from home for three weeks and plans to enjoy a few tipples with friends virtually

Amanda Lacey has been working from home for three weeks and plans to enjoy a few tipples with friends virtually

 

Indeed was one of the first major companies to ask its global workforce to work from home "to protect the health and safety of all employees and clients".

"I think once Jade pops to bed I'll send around a link and have a virtual party with the gang to celebrate after.

"I know things may possibly get worse and I don't want to put anyone under pressure or increase risk.

"I will have a bigger celebration when all this blows over as I think people will definitely want something to look forward to."

Sara O'Brien turned 30 on Sunday and found out only on the day that a surprise party had been organised for her - when she was told it had been cancelled.

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Sara O'Brien

Sara O'Brien

Sara O'Brien

 

"I had no idea a party was being organised for me until they told me it was off, so I just spent my birthday in my mam's house with my fiancé and brother and far too many vinos.

"The 30th is still going ahead at some stage, but it won't be a surprise any more, obviously.

"My best friend was supposed to come over from Madrid which I only found out about on the day too but obviously couldn't."

Irish Independent


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