On Saturdays, we have Albanian language training from 9-1 p.m. This past Saturday was my birthday. Several language classes got together to surprise me with a cake. The previous day, our whole group had been together for a Peace Corps training. Everyone sang “happy birthday” to me in Albanian, and gave me a homemade card, a rose, and some chocolate truffles. So, I was totally not expecting anything to happen Saturday. It was a sweet and unexpected surprise!
I’m guessing this surprise stemmed from the kindness of my group. I highly doubt the Peace Corps has an official “birthday budget.” Here’s a picture of everyone enjoying their ten-minute cake break. (We attend language class in a primary school.)
And then, when I went home in the afternoon, I discovered one of my host brothers brought a kitten with him from Pristina!
Here’s my oldest host brother with the kitten:
And, here’s me with the kitten!
I’ve mentioned before that it doesn’t seem common in Kosovo for people to name their pets. My host family already has a cat called “Mace” (cat). Having two cats who are both called Mace would be confusing, so I made the argument that the new kitten should have a name. My youngest host brother (who adopted the kitten), told me to choose one. Does anyone have a suggestion for a name for a female tiger-striped kitten?
Later in the day, my (real) parents met my host mom and one of my brothers via the magic of FaceTime. And then I ate more cake with my host family. It was a very happy birthday indeed!