Thursday, July 21, 2011

Turning 40

What a crazy day today has been. I woke up and it was raining. Not that big a deal except that I was supposed to take my driving exam this morning. I received my California license on my 16th birthday so I figured I could get my Czech license on my 40th. So I get up and trek out in the rain to take my exam. Half-way there my instructor calls me and says that we have to reschedule because the person before me wrecked the test car. Go figure. I know that I owe everyone the low-down on the driving thing and I promise to get to it soon.

As soon as I got to work it was immediately time for the first meeting of the day. When I finally made it to my desk, I found a birthday card and some chocolate from my team. Have I mentioned that I have a great team!?! The rest of the day was just non-stop busy. I was so glad once the day was over and I could go home and unwind. Sort of. I have people coming to stay this weekend and of course this is the day that my housekeeper is on vacation. But it was a good thing that I did a little straightening up because then came the surprises.

At 7:15, Claudia, Norbert, Sabine, Natalie, Mariya and Andreas showed up at my door with wine, champagne and Claudi's famous Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte (Black Forest Cherry cake). Natalie and Mariya won't be able to attend the big 40th fiesta on Saturday so it was very sweet of them to come by and wish me a happy birthday. But the big surprise was the Claudia's parents drove all the way down from Berlin and brought me an East German goodie basket. And the cool thing is that they will be here for the party on Saturday. I am floored that they drove over 6 hours just for my birthday. They are awesome!

Claudia's mom works for the road authority, or something to that effect, in Berlin. She had them produce a 40 km per hour traffic sign. This must have taken some favors because this isn't something that you can purchase. The family signed it and it's covered with photos from some our adventures together. I can't believe that everyone went to such trouble. I am very lucky to have such great friends over here in Euroland. And now...the countdown begins until Saturday's big shindig.

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