04 April 2011

30 Reasons

. . . I'm glad to be in Niger for my Thirtieth.

Yup.  Today's the big 3-0.  I admit, in all my dreamings of 'some day', spending my 30th birthday in Niger was nowhere on the list!  Don't get me wrong, I've never been a big birthday person (okay, maybe when I was 8) . . . it should be a day with close people . . . maybe a nice dinner . . . or something unusual.  Last year my birthday was on Easter, and two class-mates in language school went with me to Reims, in the Champagne region of France, just to get away (since the French believe in Easter-Monday . . . Oh how I miss France and their holidays!).  Champagne is a bit hard to top, regardless.

But having a milestone birthday seven weeks after transplanting to the edge of nowhere, when already feeling a bit on the discouraged/frustrated (yup, it's culture-shock) end, has the potential for attitude disaster.  So, here you have it.  30 Reasons It's Great To Celebrate My Birthday in Niger:

  1. I get more email than usual . . . they all have the same subject, but hey, email is email!
  2. Already 11 notifications by 4am my time on Facebook . . . and many even mention they read my blog!
  3. Most Nigerien women my age have at least 5 kids . . . that makes me feel young!
  4. I have to wear a head covering to work . . . no one can see my gray!
  5. It's hot and sunny . . . okay, so maybe a little too hot and sunny.
  6. I get to treat two sweet little boys today that will flash me smiles that can light up a room . . . so bright, kind of like my legs.
  7. I've already had three invitations for dinner . . . I don't think I've ever been so popular.
  8. I may not have Champagne, but I have mangos . . . and onions!
  9. My skype will be ringing off the hook . . . hopefully the internet will hold out!
  10. With seemingly nightly power-cuts, all those candles on the cake will keep the room lit!
  11. Talatin . . . 'Thirty' doesn't sound nearly as old in Hausa. 
  12. Trente . . . or in French.
  13. My house-helper comes today . . . so no dishes and no laundry for me! (HAPPY BIRTHDAY!)
  14. It's too hot for balloons . . . I don't really like balloons . . . they make my cheeks sore.
  15. I don't have to cook at all today . . . thanks L. & N. for lunch and dinner!
  16. There's a party in the village every night . . . I can pretend this one's for me.
  17. With the time change, I get an extra couple of hours to celebrate.
  18. I'll get birthday greetings in at least three languages today . . . four if I'm really lucky!
  19. I will spend at least an hour working on a modified wheelchair design . . . I'm a nerd, what can I say!
  20. I have leftover homemade coffee ice cream from Friday night . . . YUM!
  21. My custom hand-made furniture should be delivered any day now . . . happy birthday to me!
  22. I have a 24 hour truce will all creatures of the insect kingdom . . . I really hope they got that memo!
  23. Who would want to see elephants, lions and zebras when you can have donkeys, goats and camels??  (okay, not going to lie . . . ME!!)
  24. Did I mention it's going to be a nice day?
  25. Since I'm not with 'my people' maybe I'll get to celebrate again in a few months . . . besides, I know women who have been 30 for several years in a row!
  26. Being the youngest member of a team is never a bad thing.
  27. I'm well on my way to reaching my goal of 50 in 50.
  28. Since I'm single, the Nigeriens all assume I'm still in my early 20's.
  29. No matter where I am in the world, my brother is still older and grayer than I am . . . but he's got three more kids than me . . . and they're awesome.
  30. I'm living my dream!


Nancy said...

For #25, "we" stay 29 for years and the switch to 39 for awhile, just so you know :)

#28, I still think you're in your early 20s, too!

Great list! Hope you have a great birthday!
Love ya,
Nancy L

Megan S. said...

I feel like I've finally arrived turning 30. Now it's time to party! The 20s are for the kids. Good riddance! We make 30 da*n sassy and, dare I say it, sexy! Happy birthday to US!

Ekunkel said...

Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday sweet Debs, Happy Birthday to you!!!!

Jmcmarie said...

Happy Birthday, Deborah! I'm one of those #2 types that eagerly checks Facebook each morning for notification of your next blog entry. They bring delight to my day! Thank you for that and for the constant reminder of the importance of proper perspective. I'm afraid the challenges you meet in a single day would overwhelm me. We continue to pray for God's grace and strength to be poured out upon you. Have a blessed day!

Love you,
Joyce & Darrell

PS: it's snowing here this morning!

Bethany Reamer said...

just want to say again HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! i especially miss you today... wish we could all be at that Bubbles place again. =) love you lots, dear friend. have a great one and know that you're loved.