Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Manic Monday

the birthday boy with his wife (me), at our niece Valentina's 1st communion

May is a festive month for us: our anniversary, Antonello's birthday, lots of friends and family's birthdays--my uncle Hop, my boss Paul, our friends Jodi and Ray--and, this year, plenty of big events like our niece's first communion and Antonello's cousin's ordination into the priesthood. As you can imagine, we've been keeping busy. Monday was Antonello's birthday, and it was bound to be a full day.

I went into town early to work--I had one lesson at the middle school, and, as always, these lessons tend to be cancelled at the last minute. This one was no exception. I was walking toward the middle school, past the main piazza, when I noticed some students going by. First it was the 8th grade class. I waved and walked on. Then some seventh grade students walked by--another class--and I waved again. Then, the sixth grade class--the lesson I was about to teach--walked by. I stopped in my tracks. What was going on?

Two seconds later, I saw the teacher (I am a lettrice, which means that, on my lesson days, I'm a guest teacher, so I always have the regular English teacher present). There had been a mix up, a last minute theatre outing, and no one had called me. I decided to let it slide. It was my husband's birthday, I only had 4 more hours of class at the middle school before summer break, and I didn't feel like arguing. Instead, I used my newly acquired 'free time' to pick up some last minute ingredients for the cheesecake that Antonello had requested for his birthday.

There was no way I was going to get this cheesecake done today (Antonello and I had already discussed the fact that this cake was going to take some time to complete), but I needed to get started anyway. On my list was heavy whipping cream, and I searched up and down the dairy aisle for something resembling whipping cream with no luck. About to give up, I spotted a packet of those tiny little coffee creamer containers. Hmmm. Didn't seem quite right, but for a packet of 12, it only cost 40 cents. What the heck. I decided to get it--as a back up plan.

Back home, I got to work on baking some cookies (hey, if he couldn't have cake on his birthday, perhaps cookies were the next best thing?), and started on lunch, too. By lunchtime, the smell of fried eggplant and tzaziki sauce intermingled with the aroma of baked chocolate and raisin oatmeal cookies coming from the oven. What a strange birthday lunch!

That afternoon was busy too. I had three and a half hours of lessons (non-cancelled, this time), then I had to get a few more birthday things and get home and wrap presents. I frantically spent the last hour before Antonello got home dashing between tying up bows and cooking up dinner, wrapping my presents for him and those from my parents (they had sent Antonello's gifts back to Italy with me). When I set out everything on the coffee table in the living room before his arrival, there were so many gifts that it felt festive--Christmas-like. I went back to cooking, happily munching on oatmeal cookies and listening to my ipod--waiting for the birthday boy to come home.

That evening, Antonello unwrapped his presents, ate dinner, and relaxed. It was just what we needed--a night off. With everything as busy and hectic as it's been lately, spending the evening in made sense. We watched 2 hours of Antonello's new favorite TV show--Lost--and entertained impromptu guests, our friends Giampaolo and Luciana. In the middle of it all, my parents called to wish Antonello a happy birthday, and it all seemed just right: friends chatting in the living room, my parents on the phone with Antonello, gift wrap from just-opened presents piled up on the coffee table. The evening of staying in, a quiet birthday celebration at home, was the perfect antidote to another busy Monday, and a busy month of May.

Buon compleanno, Antonello! Tanti, tanti auguri!



At 11:07 AM, Blogger Cynthia Rae said...

Buon compleanno Antonello! We hope you had a wonderful day, though it sounded busy. Wishing you all the best in the years to come.

Happy Birthday!
Danilo & Cyn


Post a Comment

<< Home