Monday, November 29, 2010

Pot luck cultures birthday party

Kia Ora, everyone! How was this year's Thanksgiving? Hope everyone had a fun, filling, and relaxing long weekend, but we'll get to that in a few more posts. Right now I am going to address the fact that I somehow, though I feel like I am still 18, have a teenage son. Thirteen years ago, I had our first baby. It seemed like I'd never stop changing poopy diapers or sleeping for only 2 hours at a time, but here he is, approaching my height, his father's shoe size, and -- a teenager. It makes me a bit weepy to think that officially we have only 5 more years with him. Then some days, I am counting down the minutes until he gets the hell out of my house!! 

I remember a few months back when he was trying to resign himself to this move and he realized he'd turn 13 here. "I won't even have any friends to invite to my party!" said he. What a poor fortune teller my boy has turned out to be. First of all he has a really super group of friends and secondly, this year, there were a bunch of girls invited too. That was a new twist. Much more interesting for the sidelined observing parents. 

They started out on Guy Fawkes Night, a Friday, in Glover Park, an ancient volcanic cone down the street. Anyone know what that is? No one here seems to really know either, but it has something to do with celebrating a terrorist who tried to burn down Parliament in London. In his honor, fireworks are purchased only for four days from midnight on 2 November until 5 November, and set off on the 5th. This coincided nicely and strangely with Trey's birthday on the 6th. A good metaphor for our time here in general. Celebrating Trey's birthday on a British holiday that we know nothing about in New Zealand. OK. 

The boys ran around like puppies, tackling each other and laughing through rugby, bull rush, and soccer, thrilled that Trey and Dennis had brought an American gridiron football and could show them how to throw a spiral. The girls stayed off to the side, much cooler and more mature. Then the party moved to our house, where every morsel of food was ignored, save the kebabs, 12 bottles of Coke and Sprite, and 8 bags of Doritos. And Dennis and Jens managed to avoid burning down the Pohutukawa tree with the fireworks. A fabulous Guy Fawkes success! We ended the evening as honorary Kiwis.

And in the end everyone had a ball, the kids sang Happy Birthday with a Hip Hip Hooray re-mix, the four of us cleaned up a rather soggy mess, and Trey woke up the next morning a teenager. And his mum felt a bit older herself. 


  1. And what are those girls wearing??

  2. Too funny, Samantha!! Just what I was going to comment on--dark pantyhose with shorts? And the boys shorts and no shoes! Will you get Trey back in shoes here? good luck! They're all having fun whatever they're wearing or not wearing.

  3. We'll all miss the barefoot culture for sure!! :o)
    I remember in high school wearing boys boxer shorts and black tights.