Thursday, September 15, 2005

A Happy Birthday

Last night I was in Donny’s room studying again. After about half an hour, I fell asleep reading a text. Normally he’ll wake me up if I go to sleep, but he didn’t last night. I woke up when I heard the fan turned on, and looked up. He saw me and we both started laughing. “Uh, I may have fallen asleep.”

The third of Satie’s Six Gnossiennes was playing when I woke up, and that recharged me to keep working. I love that piece. I worked for a while longer, and then we took a break to watch something from the Dave Chapelle Show that used to be on HBO (?). I had never seen it, and it cracked me up. Then we watched some of his stand up. Around ten until 12, Donny said he’d probably better get back to work, and that he was going to study outside.

I was thinking about going to bed because I didn’t think I could do any more homework. Then I remembered what being outside at that time of night is like on this campus. There are drunk Chinese students all over the place. I decided to offer to come outside, too, and he said that’d be great if I had time.

We went looking over by the pond for a table to sit at, but they all were occupied by Chinese students with huge bottles of beer. He said that there might be one across the bridge, so we walked in that direction. As we started up the stairs of the bridge, I heard a strangely familiar tune being sung across the way.

My friends Ryan, Jason, and Gene were coming toward the bridge with packages, smiling and singing Happy Birthday. I was totally caught off guard. I had no idea that was going to happen at all. When they finished singing, Gene pulled out a plastic thing with candles on it. I call it a thing because I honestly had no idea what it was. Gene didn’t look like he exactly knew either. He was trying to light the middle of it with a piece of incense. Finally he managed to light something.

Fire shot about five inches up from the center of the thing, and petals with candles fell outwards while the plastic thing started playing Happy Birthday. I think it’s safe to say that that thing scared the hell out of everyone for a brief moment. Apparently none of them could really tell what it was supposed to do when they got it. Regardless, though, I made a wish and blew out the candles. The thing kept playing Happy Birthday, but we thought it would stop soon.

Oddly, the thing didn’t stop. It just kept playing it, and no one knew how to turn it off. Gene eventually held it under the surface of the pond, thinking that the water would short it out. It seemed reasonable enough, but we could still hear it playing faintly. He took out of the water, and it sounded with full force. He held it back under the water and left it there while I opened presents.

The first package was a voltage converter. I’d been having such a hard time trying to figure out what it was called and where I could get one, so that was great to see. The next two packages were DVDs. There were two Korean movies, and two of this Chinese singer, Zhou something. I should remember this, and I know I will soon. I just don’t recognize the second character, and I was a little overwhelmed last night for retaining new knowledge in Chinese. Those will be great, as I need to make up for a lot of lost time in learning about different pop cultures in East Asia. I loved the wrapping paper one these. It was purple with clocks, hearts, and flowers in boxes; but in some boxes was written, “Maybe I didn’t always love you but you were always on my mind.” Ha!! Classic.

The third package was huge. They told me to close my eyes while opening it. That was a little difficult past the wrapping paper. There was another bag inside with a zipper, and I didn’t know that. They opened that part for me, and then told me to first feel the gift before opening my eyes. It was really soft, and I had no idea what it was. Someone meowed and scratched my leg.

They finally let me open my eyes, and I saw that it was a huge, fluffy, pink bathrobe. I started cracking up. I’d joked about how I previously envisioned myself a spinster, walking around everywhere in a fluffy, pink bathrobe, yelling at children out of my window, and they definitely remembered.

my new bathrobe

I was still laughing really hard when Gene said that I then needed the compliment to the bathrobe. He pulled a box wrapped in an orange bag out of a larger bag. I had no idea what that was going to be, even after he got the box out of the second bag. When he opened the box, I was ecstatic. It was half chocolate, half hazelnut gelato! – my favorite! I won’t go into the details of how much of that I ate while sitting there. I’m sure you can guess already. I cut myself off so I could still have some today. While I was still eating, Jason started to pull something out of his backpack. “And to go with that…” He handed me a huge bottle of Bailey’s Irish Cream.

That whole thing was so nice. I was completely surprised. They said they wanted to be the first to tell me Happy Birthday, so that’s why Donny and I went out just about a minute after midnight. I can’t get over how nice that was. That made my night and day today. It was really great to have my new friends remember my birthday. That was so fun.

When we were getting ready to go back to the dorm, Gene got the Happy Birthday candle monster out of the water. It was still playing. He was ready to stomp on it, but Donny talked him into trying to just cut a wire on the inside. Gene messed with it for a few minutes, and then it stopped playing. It ended up in the bag with the gelato, which had to go with Ryan and Jason to the freezer in their room. Apparently the thing started playing randomly at six this morning. Oops!

And then, this morning when I awakened, I opened my email and saw that I had three new emails from Andrew. Each had an mp3 attached of songs that he wrote and recorded for me. I listened to all of them two or three times each before headed to class this morning. They’re so great. I love them.

I’m having a good birthday. I’m not a teenager anymore. Other people have told me that they dreaded turning twenty, but it’s been pretty good for me. :D


At 6:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

pretty, pretty, pretty.


Post a Comment

<< Home