Monday, September 27, 2010

Birthday Languages

Last week, I was wished, "Happy Birthday" in four different languages. While I was down the hall helping out in First Grade science, my regular students made me a giant card that they all decorated and signed. When I came back to get my things before their Italian lesson, two of them presented it to me, and then they all sang "Happy Birthday," first in English, then in Italian.

That evening, several of us went out to dinner at a Chinese restaurant by the water. We ordered a bunch of different dishes to share and enjoyed all of it. My favorites were the lemon chicken dish, one of the vegetable pasta dishes, and a sweet and spicy pork. The fried banana Kristin ordered was a good dessert, but all seven of us shared one portion, because we were headed to a highly recommended gelato shop for a real birthday dessert. Lots more people met us there, and I had some super-creamy Nutella flavored gelato. While we ate our gelato, Veronica sang me her Puerto Rican birthday song, adding Spanish to the list of languages, and a few Facebook messages in German (and more Italian and plenty of English) brought the total to four.

Other birthday awesomeness included a package from my parents with warm blankets, coloring books and real crayons, and a giant jar of peanut butter. I've been alternating between eating it by the spoonful and trying to convince myself to ration it to make it last longer. So far, eating it has been winning.

I also had my first visitor when Ted stopped by on his way from Switzerland to Hungary. It was great to see someone I've known for more than a month and have a chance to show off my new city. He was very patient with me as I led us on a wild goose chase in the rain for the Natural History Museum, which we never found. The Gallery of Modern Art was fun (and out of the rain), if not exactly what we were expecting. I suppose "modern" is relative when there's Roman ruins in the middle of the city. We ate lots of pizza and gelato, so I consider it a successful weekend.