The opportunity came up to head to the US early to help interview candidates for an open position. On Monday I learned that I would be approved to leave early, and decided to tack two extra days onto the trip so I could surprise Josh for his 30th Birthday. So on Monday I booked a ticket for Thursday night!
One of the hard parts of living abroad is missing the big events in your family (Augies’ birth and baptism, Thanksgiving, and other important days), so when I realized I would be in the US a few days after my brother’s birthday, it was a no brainer to leave earlier to surprise him for his birthday.
The trip home was rough – four flights with delays and cancelations. I eventually made it to Port Columbus very late Friday night and was happy to be home. I spent that night with my sister and the next day I got to hang out with Augie. Saturday night was Josh’s party which Tess and Sarah had spent months organizing. As they got the room ready they learned from one of Josh’s friends that Josh has known about the party for about a month… his friends can not keep a secret. Even with the surprise spoiled, when Josh entered the room he faked a good surprise. Then he turned and saw me. Very quickly the fake surprise turned to confusion and then genuine surprise. It was wonderful! I am so glad I could share his 30th birthday with him.
The party was a huge success at Schmidt’s, a genuine German restaurant in German Village. Josh and his friends love the German food and beer, and everyone enjoyed the company.
The next night we had a family celebration for him. I am continually reminded how blessed I am to have my amazing family. Sure, we are a little messed up and possibly a little crazy, but there was more love in that room than I could express in words. On top of having a loving family, I am blessed to have all four of my grandparents.