|(Front) Loren, Ilayas, Yenilove, Maraya, Elideau (Back) Junior, Sony, Willy|
Last night was perhaps the most comical birthday party I have ever been a part of. For Yenilove’s ninth birthday, she wanted to go to the pool and eat pizza and cake. She requested that her brother Elideau who is 10 and lives in Muñoz with a different family go with us. A few days ago we planned with the family to pick Elideau up at 2pm and then bring him back the next morning. We were late in picking him up. It wasn’t until around 4pm that we were able to do so.
Earlier in the morning we did uniform shopping with our kids as well as some of the kids who have scholarships. Miguelina was one of the ones on that trip. As we dropped her off at her house, she asked if she could go to the pool with us. She is our neighbor. She hadn’t gotten to go on the end of camp pool trip. I asked Yenilove if she wanted her to and she said yes. I told her we would come get her after we got Elideau.
After we picked up Elideau, we came back to get Miguelina, but she was not in the spot where she said she would be. I then realized the time and thought that she would likely be at the soccer field as practice was going on and she liked to watch. We drove up there and got caught in a crowd of the players asking about cleats and just updating us on things. Because we were running late, she thought we weren’t going anymore or had left her behind. We found her and she ran to get her bathing suit.
We left soccer practice and drove down from the field to the main road to wait for Miguelina there. I soon realized that Jameson was in the back seat and he also asked if he could go to the pool. I asked Yenilove what she thought and she said he could go but not with an extremely happy heart. As we reached the main road, Junior, Loren, and Sony pulled up. Junior was excited to see his brother Elideau and it slipped that we were going to the pool. They all three hopped in uninvited and chatted up their excitement about going to the pool. I tried to kick them out but they wouldn’t budge. Miguelina came back and squeezed in the front seat with Yenilove. Ilayas, Maraya, and Elideau sat on the laps in the back. And we set off.
They had a great time at the pool, especially with the water slide. It was late so we couldn’t stay for too long. We stayed for maybe an hour and a half. On the way home, Junior requested that we listen to Ray Charles, “Hit the Road Jack” so we found the CD and put it on. I now have a car with a CD player in it so my CDs from middle school, high school, as well as a few from college are getting put to good use again! I got a kick out of hearing the nine of them sing the song in my little ’87 Toyota Camry.
We pulled up to the house and the kids had already been ordered to not tell the boys that we were going to eat pizza. I told them that we were going to get the cake and would be back soon. They got excited and requested that I bring soda or juice.. and then settled on juice because it is healthier than soda. Jameson tried to go with us but I told him he should stay. Elideau got out of the car and Yenilove called him back in. Jeres was waiting for us and hopped in the car.
We went to Il Giardino restaurant on Calle 27 de febrero. It has the outdoor brick oven where the kids can watch them make the pizza and a little play area too. We thought we would try it out. It was good. Afterwards, we picked up a 2L bottle of red soda and headed home. The cake is where the funny stuff happened.
When we arrived home, Junior and Sony were sitting in front of the house and jumped up with excitement to open the garage door and enter with us. The kids hopped out of the car for me and Ilayas asked for the key to the fridge to get the cake out. Yes, we have a lock on our fridge. I passed him the key and took maybe all of two minutes getting out of the car and to the fridge. When I got there, Sony asked if I had taken a piece of the cake. I quickly saw that a piece was missing on the bottom left corner under where it says, “Felicidades”. I tried to get them to write Yenilove’s name at the store but they said their cake writing thing was broken. The cake had been locked in the fridge since last night, but the key is on my key ring which I either keep in my hand/on my body or in my safe. I was confused as to how someone got in to get a piece.
|Notice the bottom left corner of the cake...|
Anyway, we put it on the table and sent Elideau to go buy a box of matches at the colmado as we couldn’t find any. Ilayas began putting party hats on everyone’s heads. I was able to get my battery eating camera open long enough to take a few pictures. Junior called to me and hurried me several times throughout this process saying that they would eat the cake if I didn’t hurry up. We started lighting and putting candles on the cake via a team effort. We commented that there were nine candles and we were done. Then Loren went to put on a tenth and a few of us exclaimed “No more!” Junior yelled, “God doesn’t agree with that!” I cracked up at that and asked him to show me where it says that in the Bible.
Just then, as we finished placing and lighting the candles and determined the correct number that should be on the cake, a time when you would then turn off the lights and start singing Happy Birthday, the electricity went out. The light from the candles made it not much of an issue. We sang, and she blew. They were trick candles and she eventually needed help. Ilayas, Maraya, and Junior all helped and they finally were all out. But now we had no lights. Chinaider held his cell phone up to give a bit of light, but it flickered a little. Junior continuously called me to hurry up and cut the cake or it would start disappearing. I forgot to mention, in addition to the four boys who went to the pool with us, Chinaider and Willy popped in and we put party hats on them as well.
I did my best to cut up the cake and dish it out. I cut four rows of five which made 19 with the one missing piece. I gave to the birthday girl, then the little ones Ilayas, Maraya, Elideau, then Sony, Junior, Loren, Jameson, Chinaider, Willy, and Jeres. A few times Chinaider’s phone flickered out and then he got it back on. Each time that happened, a piece came up missing. At one point I took the whole cake and announced that I was taking it away so that pieces would stop disappearing. Junior agreed that that is what I should do. Other than that, kids asked for spoons and commotion went on but it was dark and all a blur. I got a piece for myself and then struggled through the dark to lock the remaining three pieces in the fridge. I then joined everyone else out on the porch and ate my piece. They chatted and commented and I observed that although most of them had had two pieces by the math of how many pieces came up missing, they were all completely done in what seemed like a very short amount of time and sat there without a sign of cake that I could see in the moonlight.
I told them that that was the funniest birthday cake experience I had ever had. Chinaider then asked me about the Russian folks who I bought a cake from for his 13th birthday in 2008. I told him that they went back to Russia shortly after that. I used to tutor their daughter in Russian and Spanish when she came not knowing either language, and I don’t know any Russian! Chinaider is the only one of the boys I have ever bought a cake for. When any of them have a birthday, I make sik sou bonbon. When Ilayas, Yenilove, and Maraya have a birthday, we go all out with the cake and pizza. If we did cake for everyone, it would be too much. But Chinaider was our “little one” at that time so I got a cake for him that year. Plus, the Russian family forced me to eat a cake every time I did a lesson so I wanted to pay them back by buying one. And man were their cakes good!
Looking back on the evening, I wish I had a video of the car full Hit the Road Jack singing, and a video of the cake distribution, hahahahaha. Happy birthday, Yenilove!
On another note, the other day around 1pm when I bought food items at a colmado to make lunch, a small boy maybe 10 years old max. was ahead of me in line and I watched as he handed the woman money and she filled up a soda bottle with rum and handed it back to him. I commented to her about selling rum to a small boy and said shouldn’t his parent have to come to purchase. She shrugged and said it looked like they sent him and I said that she should only sell to people over 18, the drinking age here, but I don’t know how much she paid attention to me…
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