October 19, 2003 – Two days earlier I had celebrated my first birthday in Europe and it had been a good day! My birthday happened to fall on a Friday and for me Fridays meant two things. First, I was in charge of breakfast for the dorm, which mercifully, was cold cereal and was easy to prepare! As I stumbled downstairs trying to make my eyes focus I came into the main room and found a sign wishing me a Happy Birthday & a card signed by the girls in the dorm! It was a fun way to start the day! The second thing that Friday meant was Hot Lunch, a meal cooked by the dorm staff that we then took into the school at lunchtime for our dorm girls to eat!
When I got to school I found a couple cards in my mailbox. One was from Micah. It was a handmade card with balloons on the front made from color copy paper. It was obvious that he had made the card in his free time at school either that morning or the day before. Not only was I was impressed with his design skills, but also that he had remembered that it was my birthday.
I can’t remember what we served the girls that day for lunch, but I do remember the dessert! My RA partner had asked me what I would like for my birthday dessert and I gave her a fairly open-ended answer of “anything chocolate.” That was my first taste of Flourless Chocolate Cake & I was in LOVE! During the middle of serving hot lunch to our girls, my RA partners made me stand on a chair and all the Witt girls (along with the rest of the school that was in the cafeteria at the time) sang “Happy Birthday” to me! It was a little embarrassing, but definitely made me feel loved.
When lunch ended we started hauling pans and boxes back to the van. During this time the other guy pulled me aside and gave me a compilation of pictures from our trip to Paris that he had put together along with some chocolate. Later after cleanup was finished, I climbed into the front of the van to go home and found a beautiful bouquet of sunflowers. The only thing was that there was no note! It kept me puzzling for the rest of the day, which included an evening party with many of the other RAs as our students were at an evening activity thereby freeing us up to spend some time together!
Sadly, the picture I took of my bouquet got lost, but it looked similar to this.
The next day was Saturday, which meant checking to make sure the girls had cleaned their rooms and done their chores, but mostly just sitting around in the common areas in case anyone needed anything. I don’t remember the reason why now, but Micah came over to our dorm that day. Once he and I had settled into the couches in the office, he told me that the sunflowers, which were prominently displayed in that room since that is where we as RAs spent a lot of time, were from him. He told me that he hadn’t wanted to cause a scene at school by giving me the bouquet in front of all the students so once we were all busy with hot lunch inside the school he had snuck the flowers into the van! To say that I was impressed was an understatement. It meant that he had remembered from some previous conversation that sunflowers were my favorite flower AND he had thought about the fact that it would have been the talk of the school that Mr. Powers had given flowers to me. I don’t remember much else about what we talked about over the course of that Saturday afternoon, but I do remember wanting to show him the pictures that my mom had sent with my birthday card and feeling that it was extremely important to share with him about my life back in Oregon.