Another week, another late blog post. Apologies.
This week I failed on the nice photos front – my phone is slowly dying and with it the ability to capture memories well. I’ve included some of Isabella’s SLR shots to try and make up for it. It was an all around fantastic week though. It started with brunch in the “garden” last Sunday morning where the homemade croissants were consumed. It was nice to spend time together sitting in the sunshine and eating well.
Throughout the week, other really nice little things happened. I got to go to coffee with Nikki and Corina and a returning exchange student called Alex to take some photos for their magazine, Corina also drove me to sign the contract to my new place (yay!), we went on an excursion backstage at Bregenz Opera on the Lake which was a bit of a privilege, I had a knife dropped directly upright into my finger (haha), Isabella and I did our last Saturday market and coffee run as she’s leaving this week and celebrated Nevia’s birthday on the Friday night.
That brings us to the weekend which was one of the nicest periods of time spent together so far. Saturday was pretty lazy, it was indoors weather and post markets and coffee shop, a large part of the day was spent baking anzac cookies and sausage rolls for the Australian party that night. Following this, time was wasted around the kitchen table which was eerily quiet as most people had gone on a day trip to Zurich. In the afternoon, things picked up with a trip in the pouring rain to Lidl where my shoelace got caught in the wheel of my bike and I ended up having to lower myself to the ground on the side of the road to get it out…..my companion cycled on.
That night was the Australian themed party in the basement of our place. It involved dodgy watercolour drawings/posters of koalas and kangaroos as well as definitions of “bloody ripper” and “fair dinkum” on the walls. Sangria, pavlova, sausage rolls and anzac biscuits were plentiful and there was an abundance of southern cross make shift tattoos. Faces were covered with ‘Gday’ and ‘Aussie Aussie Aussie Oi Oi Oi’. We listened to Flume and George Maple and sat around and chatted. At about 11, an Aussie cake was brought out by Thibaut complete with Tasmania as a heart. At midnight, I was getting changed in my room ready to head out to Conrad Sohm later that night when the people who I value so much here burst in to wish a happy birthday. (Had huge potential for disaster but somehow worked out). I feel so loved by them and I cannot begin to tell you how thankful I am for them.
Following this, we walked to the city centre where 12 of us got into a shuttle (meant for much less than 12 people) and headed to Conrad Sohm. There we danced in a somewhat empty room, yet definitely not lacking energy. Post hot chips and hamburgers, we left the club and opted to walk home instead of taking a taxi (both thrifty and arguably stupid). Due to a variation in speed, people started splitting up and Jena, Milann, Thibaut and I found ourselves together outside school at about 4:30. Realising that the sun came up quite soon on the longest day of the year, we decided to wait at school for an hour or so (another arguably dumb decision). We took photos on the Macs and then walked home in the sunlight which was masked by a thick blanket of cloud.
Had a couple of hours of sleep or so then awoke on Sunday to find a piece of paper lying in front of my door – a clue from my all time favo(u)rite Moosmahd American (well, on par with Chloe) for a treasure hunt around the building. With the assistance of 7 clues, I discovered 21 gifts all really personal and great. Think, diet coke, Moleskines, Stabilo pens, chicken, oranges. I’m so thankful for Jena – seriously – and for all she’s done for me this semester. She’s simultaneously one of the most sarcastic and most genuine people I know.
She led me down to the basement where I was instructed to go inside. There, waiting, were all my mates from Moosmahd inc. Madeleine Mouton and some friends from Sebastianstrasse. They sung happy birthday and watched me cut the most beautiful Persian Love Cake that the two Aussie girls had made (seriously thankful for friends who can cook). Bunting was plentiful. There was one that was particularly hilarious made my Isabella. It was letters made out of used chewing gum and then hung by her ethernet cable because we don’t have any string. There were 21 white presents laid out on a table posted by my parents – seriously the best parents in the world. Pom poms that we have for our birthdays at home were hanging from the roof and 21 Australian party bags ft. Tim Tams, Jaffas, Minties, Aussie tattoos, musk sticks, Sherbies lined the brunch laden table. Effort had been put into preparing my favourite foods here – sweet potato, smoked salmon wraps, caremalised onion tarts, homemade ricotta, bakery goods, yoghurt and strawberries and we ate and applied tattoos and skyped my parents (whose accidental cultural insensitivity provided a few laughs). Blue and white hydrangeas lined the table post an observant friend noticing a passing comment at the previous markets. We hung out into the late afternoon where people peeled off for short naps. Isabella, Jena and I headed upstairs where we opened some of the presents. Mementos of Sydney – Macro almonds, Extra chewing gum – all of which I’m so so so thankful for. I loved a poster that Chloe also made me of my time here. I need to mention two beautiful books I received.
One – a bound watercolour comic of some of the precious moments that Isabella and I have had here together. I laughed and laughed reading it. It is one of the most beautiful things I have received.
Two – a bound, hefty, book from my parents of all my photos and blog posts from this semester. I’m so appreciative of having a hard copy of these memories and have spent so much time already flicking through it’s pages. I genuinely cannot express the love that I have for my family. I am SO blessed and would not change one single thing about them.
An hour or so later people started watching Harry Potter and munching on the left over food/party bags. Although I couldn’t bring myself to watch the first four like they could, I enjoyed jumping on the back of number two post half a pizza by the river.
It was a brilliant weekend which led to a few days of recovery but was so worth it.
At 21, I’ve finally come to realise the value of people and even more so the value of the God who made them.
A few pages from Isabella’s book
Couldn’t find chocolate chips baking this week – DIY
DJ Kunststoff (Milann hitting the decks)
4 thoughts on “Week Seventeen”
Thibaut looks like Daniel Radcliff in the first school photo.
What a wonderful way to spend your 21st birthday. I don’t know why but it made me cry (I must be turning into Joss) I just think it is so special when people you have known for barely a year make such an effort – there was so so much thought put into all the celebrations. Tell Isabella I loved her drawings. If I ever write a book, will she illustrate it for me???
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Made me cry too Pol. What an amazing group of people! They all went to so much effort in different ways. I find myself crying to think they are all splitting up and returning home. I think she had the best 21st ever.
I am with you Pol. Crying because of the beautiful friends who all went to so much effort in different ways using their different skills to make it such a special day. I get misty every time I one of them has left to go home. What a special group they have been.
Oops! I already posted something but I am not sure it worked. So please excuse this second post!!