This weekend we celebrated my older brother Joe's 27th birthday (which was actually the 16th). Katie had us over to the house for dinner along with her side of the family. The food was great, and I enjoy spending time with her sister and parents.
This is the first time every that I bought Joey a birthday gift... in fact, it was the first time ever he wished me a Happy Birthday. Though there is still a lot in our past, and uneasiness between us, time and distance (not living in the same house) is starting to heal the wounds. Joe is obsessed with the movie A Christmas Story, and being a huge fan of the 1940's, I too love this film for it's cultural value. So, it's an interest we share. He has been collecting everything he can from the movie from action figures, to village pieces, to a mini leg lamp he keeps in his office. I found a miniature replica of the "Little Orphan Annie" decoder pin as was used in the movie. It was rather a cheap copy, so I promised him when I found a real one on ebay, I will pick it up for him. Alone with the pin he got a container of "rich chocolaty" Ovaltine. He loved it.
My parents gave him a cool present from Disney World. It was a figurine of Mickey shaking hands with a firefighter. I thought it was so neat. In fact, Joe is hoping to get the results of his state firefighter exam today. I have been praying so hard he gets it. There are many things I wouldn't recommend my brother for, but when it comes to his genuine passion for that career, I can't think of a better man for the job. Despite my not-so-good experience with firemen, Joe does make me proud of the work he does.
On Monday, we celebrated my Mom and Dad's 30th Wedding Anniversary, which is Joe's birthday, and would have been my Grandfather's birthday. My Aunt arranged for us to meet them out at The Red Mill Inn for a surprise dinner. Mom and Dad thought that they were just meeting my Aunt and Uncle, and when they arrived, the found their children, and three of the closest friends waiting for them there. So, we all had dinner and cake at the restaurant, and it turned out to be a very nice evening.. despite the fact that the food was really quite awful.
Anniversaries and weddings get me rather emotional on the inside... for reasons I'm sure faithful readers of this blog can already guess. Joe took the occasion to remind me that I will be like our Dad's oldest sister who never married (though she is now engaged to a rather pitiful man who she seems to be marrying out of sheer loneliness). Some how, I know I'll end up the old man living alone in the big old house where kids are afraid to go up to on Halloween. Oh well.. more candy for me then.
came into town this week. He is now teaching in An old friend of mine who went to high school and NCCC with me, as well as worked at WalmartLas Vegas. He came over for a visit last night, and we went out to lunch this afternoon down by the river. I think I've spent more time with him in the past 24 hours than I have in the past 5 years. Ha Ha. It's nice catching up with him, and remembering all the stories from high school we have forgotten. Especially the time I got our papers torn up in junior year Spanish for copying his answers (ironic because he was the one always copying from me). He now laughs at how furious he was, and how hysterical I thought the whole situation was. Good times.