Warning. I’m getting old and want to remember the following events. Therefore, this one is all about me. Well, really kind of Robyn. You’ll see.
If you’d rather wait for more about the kids or our life in Ghana then just chill til the next episode.
Wednesday was my birthday, and Robyn had been planning something special for awhile. You know, shepards pie for my birthday dinner, then a couple of friends coming over for pizza Friday. The things she knows I like. I woke up to the family Happy Birthday banner by the table and Tina fixed us pancakes. A good start to what would be a long day.
School was school with the bonus of parent conferences all afternoon. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a birthday. In all seriousness, the conferences were actually pretty good. It was exhausting from 1:30 to 5:30 solid talking to parents, but I had some interesting conversations and they were overwhelmingly positive. But that’s not why we’re here.
So Robyn had been adamant that I must leave at exactly 5:30 to go home. You know because it was my birthday and we had shepard’s pie waiting for us right? So 5:30 she ushered me out and we walked to the corner to wait on Eddie to pick us up who was running a bit late. We had some nice “us” time while we waited and even had a conversation with a couple of local folks about an unnamed fruit that one of them was collecting from a tree beside the road.
Robyn was becoming increasingly antsy as we continued to wait and we walked farther and farther down the road to meet Eddie until we eventually ran across the major intersection to meet him. Random. I just kind of laughed and figured she was just ready to get home.
Eddie approached, whipped around in the middle of the road to let us jump in the car. (Remember this is all happening between 5:30 and 6pm. Think about traffic at that time at your place and then take out a bunch of the rules and the lines in the road and that gives you a bit of an idea of what it’s like here). Horns blared at us as he explained the construction made him late. We laughed and he took off at warp speed which was slightly uncharacteristic for Eddie and Robyn actually asked him to slow down. All of this should have been signs as I look back…
As we cruised along Robyn said something like, “This might be our only alone time tonight, so I’ll go ahead and give you your present.” My curiosity peaked a bit here. I opened my gift and she’s given me a new Ghana FA kit. Super cool. Seconds later Eddie took an odd turn to which I commented, “I haven’t been this way home before.” Then he whipped it into the parking lot of the Dzorwulu soccer pitch where all my buddies, and Maddox, are already on the pitch kicking around. Eddie let out a big laugh, Robyn yelled “Surprise!” and I was stunned.
I got out of the car and Josie ran up to me in her Belle princess dress and asked when we get to eat cake. I laughed and explained we had to wait until after the game, put on my new kit and hit the pitch for an hour of fun with my friends. Robyn had organized the whole thing with the help of Tina and Eddie in super ninja style. She’d organized everything perfectly. Tasty beers, nugrets (remind me to tell you that story later), Edith’s burritos, and cake. She even brought my cleats and socks.
I don’t think I’ve ever smiled that much while playing soccer. It was a perfect evening of family, friends, and football (because that’s what we call it here).
Many thanks to my wife who knows how to make me smile. I’m thankful every day that she walks next to me.
Ok, so maybe I was poaching a bit there, but it was late in the game and my birthday. I earned it through hustle the rest of the match.