Last Thursday I went shopping for food and drinks. The latter without alcohol because I was buying for a birthday party for a new 14 year old. Yes, it was for son2 from my adopted refugee family. In the afternoon I put a white cloth on the table then cups, glasses, plates etc. As the clock approached 4pm I added different cakes and fruit.
Ten past four and the bell rang. The family had arrived on bicycles. We secured them in my garden and they entered my home. Lots of friendly greetings and they all immediately took off their shoes before entering the living room. The same culture as in Germany.
Lots of smiles, Oooohs and Aaaaahs when they saw the table with food and drink and off we went to celebrate son2’s birthday. His father had earlier asked if the family could celebrate at my flat because of the freedom it offered in contrast to the home where they still live in cramped, basic conditions.
We started with lots of talking and cross-talking as the kids tucked into all the cakes, crisps and other things on offer. Lots of topics including life at school, sport activities, learning German and hoping to get a flat in the future. The latter is dependent on so many other things. You can read about this in an earlier post about the future of families from Afghanistan from next year and the killing still taking place.
Although we talked about this we spent most of the time on just enjoying being together and sharing his birthday. I asked son2 what he had got for his birthday. He just said, “Nothing:” At that point I told son1 to pick up a parcel and give it to his brother. He did this and son2 waited with arms out and his eyes closed as I had told him to do.
Parcel into his arms, eyes opened, tearing away packaging, then the BIG happy smile. That smile really would melt an iceberg!! Yes, just what he wanted and it was now his! Lots of happy family sharing the moment as each embraced him and gave him a birthday kiss. Here you can see the embrace from Ma and Pa. I really like this photo!
Son2 then went into my kitchen to practice skateboarding. It was a really special event made even special by the pure pleasure this newly arrived 14 year old had from getting such a present and sharing a party with his family. I should add that it was made possible by a donation from Aunt Jutta and a bit more money from me. Well worth it.