Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Am I an angst-filled rock star?

In order to counterbalance yesterday's rant, my posting today will contain almost nothing political and hopefully will make you all feel happy and balanced (maybe, except for Helene as there are photos of her drunk in this post - but she never leaves comments here so I don't care :-).)

For those of you that don't know, I turned 27 last Friday. For those of you that did know, thanks for the birthday wishes.

(Speaking of well-wishers, Lora (from the US) email me about playing frisbee in Innsbruck. We are always happy to play disc with new people here :-).)

Anyway, back to the topic at hand. Last Friday I turned 27. For those of you that know your angst-ridden rock star history you'll know that most of them seem to die at the age of 27. One could pose the question, "am I a rock star?". This might seem like a stupid question to ask, but at least one person in the last 2 weeks has asked me this question - some guy came up to me on the bus a week-or-so ago asking if I wanted to be in his band because he thought he'd seen me playing before... Weird doesn't begin to describe it... Anyway, if I die in some unfortunate circumstances this year I guess I was really meant to join that band and be a rock star...

OK, that's more than enough smack-talk for one day.

I had a great birthday and lot of people helped me to celebrate it. I was a bit worried (as was my Mum) that my first birthday in Europe would be a bit of a lonely affair. Well, that didn't happen as I seem to have found myself some really nice new friends, not to mention the efforts of some really nice old friends that also conspired to make me smile a lot.

Some special mentions include my girlfriend who started the birthday shenanigans for calling me at midnight to wish me a happy birthday (though not forgetting my mate George who messaged me 4 days in advance :-)). Another goes to my new(ish) flatmate Karolene (who's name I've probably misspelled) who baked a totally awesome birthday cake for me. I woke up to find that my three flatmates had organized cake and coffee for breakfast. It was a really nice way to wake up. Here is a photo of the three of them (Helene, Maria, and Karolene):

In the evening we cooked a serious Thai food feast (kinda inspired by me going crazy and buying everything in the Asian grocer downtown). The green vegetable curry was great but I was disappointed by my attempts at a laksa (if anyone has a good recipe, send it to me!). The dinner was made extra-special because an old friend of mine from home, Pat, happened to be in Innsbruck on my birthday and could make it to dinner. It was really cool to catch up with him. Anyway, here's a photo us all about sit down to the feast (from the left: me, Maria, Georg, Maria, Stefan, Helene, Pat and Karolene was taking the photo...):

The only down-side to my birthday was that the following morning one of my flatmates, Helene, moved back home to France after spending her summer here working with the experimental BEC group here in Innsbruck. Helene was a lot of fun to have as a flatmate, and as I threatened her I would, I'm posting some photos from her "going away" party last week:

Here is a photo of Helene madly preparing food for the 30 guests that were agout to burst through our front door:

Here is a photo of Helene at about 2 AM after she drank more glasses of wine than she could accurately remember (note the beanie she's wearing, this was a gift from the BEC group that she received that night, she was very proud of the beanie...):