Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Joyeux Anniversaire...

And a happy birthday it was... I turned "28" on Saturday, you see (well, almost, but who's counting?)

While I lived in Paris, I enjoyed celebrating my birthday on the Normandy coast and would head out there for the day with a couple of close friends. Off we went, down the gorgeous "Côte Fleurie", driving through quaint Honfleur, old-fashioned Trouville and finally arriving in glamorous Deauville... Delicious seafood, crêpes, invigorating walks on the wind-swept beaches (imagine Seattle in March... unpredictable weather), some shopping thrown in for good measure in Deauville's fancy boutiques before heading back to Paris... Ah, memories, memories...

Trouville beach (Claude Monet)
15 years later... Seattle... Floc, floc, floc (that's the sound of the rain in French)... What's a girl to do to celebrate her birthday? There was no need to worry. My boys and Les American girlfriends were in charge!

On Saturday March 12, my actual birthday, les Boys took me out for lunch to a local French bistro, le Pichet. The storm was raging outside and we tried to ignore it. After paying $16 for the privilege of parking across the street for 1.5 hours (you've got to love Seattle...), I was greeted by Le Husband, Junior and... my new friend, Le Dog. When Le Husband pulled him out from under the table, Le Dog became an instant sensation. Everyone had to stop by to "Ooohhh" and "Ahhh" and ask us what shelter he was coming from. I do love bulldogs, you see, and am hoping to adopt a Frenchie sooner or later. Meanwhile, this recycled version will do quite nicely.

Le Dog and his new owner... Is it me or
does he look like a beaver???

On Saturday evening, Les girlfriends had organized a fun party - my favorite kind of party - a movie night. Delicious food, Champagne, cool gifts and birthday cards, and finally... le movie, another favorite, "French Kiss". 

Meg and Kevin ham it up in Paris!
I am very lucky. I have great girlfriends. They are fun to hang around with, and generous to boot. I need to show you some of their cadeaux and cards (I had requested "no gifts" mind you, but they ignored me):

Apparently, "someone" thought I needed to sleep
surrounded by French bulldogs!
And the word is...

A black cat (I thought it was mine!), reading French books!

Another dog... Are you starting to see a theme here?

I must admit American greeting cards are much better than French ones! When I stop by a Hallmark store or the local Target, I am always amazed at the selection. I bet there is a card for every single occasion one can think of and more-- but I digress...

The weekend was not over yet. To complicate things a bit, we had to move our clocks forward on Sunday, and that means we lost a whole hour of sleep; even more it turns out, since our family was scheduled to join friends for the Saint Patrick's Day Dash (our first!) in downtown Seattle at the crack of dawn. As a dear friend would say: "Oy!"

Off we went, into Le big minivan with our buddies, decked out in green hats, beads, scarves and doing our darnedest to keep our eyes open. Well, folks, this being the Pacific Northwest and all, it just n.e.v.e.r. stopped pouring! Still, we walked over three miles, some uphill, and had a fabulous time, joking around and dancing and finished the "race" by 11:00am. We were quite the lively bunch!

Soaked Seattleites brave (ignore?) the NW weather,
determined to have a good time!
Les amis by the 3-Mile marker

French Leprechaun - "Lutin"
We got rewarded by freebies from local vendors (some of us are BIG on freebies you see...), and drove home to a hot shower and a much-needed change of clothes. The fun was not over yet. Two hours later, the merry group reconvened to enjoy more partying, Irish dishes, and a variety of green beverages. This was a perfect ending to an amazing weekend. I did feel very special and grateful for all my wonderful friends (the most eclectic group you ever saw). When family lives 5000 miles away, true friends do make a difference. Merci les amis!

It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them

-- Ralph Waldo Emerson


  1. I'm glad you had such a wonderful birthday, sounded fun. We just returned from a Luau with fire eating sword dancer, quite impressive. It was a good spread and excellent show. Sante ~

  2. Life is never as much fun without being stupid with friends!


Bonjour! I love hearing from you, my readers. To quote a fellow blogger, my friend Owen, "Comments are the icing on blogcake... Comments are the UFO in the twilight sky bearing news from other planets... Comments are raspberry vinegar in salad dressing... Comments are the cool balm of after-sun moisturizing lotion... Comments are the moment the band comes back out onstage to play an encore... Comments are the gleam in the eye across the room in a smoky bar... Comments are the rainbow after the rainstorm..." Merci for your comments! French Girl in Seattle