Yesterday was my birthday. For a change I didn't really feel that depressed or anything at all about it. What I did worry about a bit was having this new friend - the English student, if I mentioned her before - over for the weekend; thanks to previous and virtually all bad or at least terribly confusing meetings like this I was feeling most definitely apprehensive about it. As it turns out, this feeling was totally unwarranted.
On Saturday I first got my birthday gifts from Pieter: a Hello Kitty plushie and keyring as well as a new hairdryer. What can I say? I'm a sucker for cute stuff :) Pieter and I did groceries as usual, dropped off a package at the post office and returned home where I had time for a quick breakfast. At close to 11 AM I had to catch a train to Amsterdam where I met up with this English student and my mother, the latter having asked me to meet her there as it would be more convenient for her. This would be the second time I would meet this student.
After a bit of logistics we finally met up at the train station where the student gave me her birthday gift: a CD featuring music by her and another girl. After waiting for a bit - my mom's train was supposed to arrive at 11.32, but this turned out to be 11.38 for some reason - but eventually we found each other as well. My mom really wanted to meet this new friend of mine, so she finally got the chance.
We went to a little cafe some distance away from the station where we had a drink. My mom gave me this heart I could write a message on, a pair of luxurious chopsticks and some money. What puzzled me a bit was that when the student was away for a moment my mom said to me "Well done finding this girl." or something to that effect. I wasn't sure what to think of that. I actually still don't :)
Anyway, my mom got picked up by a friend of her while the student and I went back to her place to pick up some things she would need, like a swimsuit. We walked both ways through the streets and parks of Amsterdam, which was made very pleasant by the fine weather. Eventually we returned to the train station and caught the first train back to Almere.
Once back home we had cake, drinks and tea, then watched a movie (Spaceballs, a classic), had dinner (Chinese take-out, yum) and the student and I took a walk, then watched another movie together (Secret Window, an okay movie based on a book by Stephen King). After that she was pretty much nodding off already, so we decided to go to bed early.
For me this was the first time I really did the 'pillow talk' thing; talking about mostly girl stuff with another girl. I must say that it is pretty fun ^_^ It's times like that when I miss not having had any female friends before. Actually falling asleep was more difficult for me, with PTSD flashbacks keeping me awake. Eventually I did manage, but I have no idea whether I slept more than a few hours at most. The student had no such issues, though :P
After getting up we had to rush to make it to the pool, where we had a fun time. The student got a chance to socialize a bit with my other friends/Pieter's friends, while I caught up with some people I hadn't seen or spoken to since the summer vacation started. This was pretty fun, especially to see those Chinese girls and their mother again. They seemed very energetic today and when they saw me they called out my name, asking me to join them. I love children like them :)
A few hours after we got back from the pool the student had to leave for an appointment. I took a nap soon after that, as I felt pretty tired. Waking up from it, I felt rested but also kind of lonely. It's easy to get used to the presence of fun people :) I'm really glad I met a friend like her: someone who is fun to talk to, mostly sane and likes to have in-depth talks on the finer points of life and everything. It's something I used to do a lot with my mom a few years ago, and it's fun to do it again but this time with someone my age.
All in all, not a bad birthday, and I think those long talks with this student are really changing me. It certainly beats visiting a shrink ;) I also like discussing such matters in English instead of Dutch, due to the former being so much more expressive. I'm having some difficulty at the moment switching back to talking Dutch again, as I seem to have a strong preference for English. Fortunately not many people get to hear me talk in Dutch :P