Festeggiamo! Finalemento ho ventuno anni!

*Haven't had internet on my computer in a while so please excuse my late posting!*
Thursday at work I was messaging and BBM-ing Helena all day to figure out our plans for the night.  It’s funny how the midnight before your birthday can be so much more exciting than the actual day.  Friday, my birthday, I was just planning to go to dinner with some of the friends I’d made, and that would be plenty for me.  I felt bad that I wouldn’t be going back to Muto for my actual birthday, but I didn’t think there would be much to do, and I knew my new friends in Rome would be happy to celebrate with me (all though I would have liked to have a proper celebration with the nonni and my parents as well).  Anyways, so Helena and I were scheming plans for the night while we were supposed to be working, and we decided we would bring wine to Piazza Trilussa (the main steps in Trastevere), hang out there for a while, then head on over to Aperitivo on the isola, and then return to the steps if it was too early to go out out, hang out and have a grand ole time.  Plan set. 

Plan changed…

Kate a friend I had met earlier had 1 day left in Rome before she returned home, and she wanted to go get a Tiramisu at a bar that a friend had raved to her about and she had asked me to go with her, so our plans shifted slightly.  I would meet Kate at Cade Dovelu on Via Nazionale at 8:00.  Helena would try and get there by 8:30. Then we would meet Cornelius at N’importe Quoi at 9:00, then we would go to the steps all together and then to the Isola for aperitivo and resume the plan, just all a little bit later.

So after work I hurried home to get ready to go out. Showered and got dressed, then went to find a shopping bag to carry the 4 beers I had in the fridge. Helena said she would bring a bottle of wine, and I said I would bring some beer, for all of us were sick of paying 8 euro for one drink. Surely supermarket beer and wine was better and cheaper… anyways I met Kate at 8. Rhyme! And we went to sit down inside the café, and we ordered ourselves Tiramisu.  We sat and enjoyed the delicious treat, and chatted for a while.  Kate had been given the opportunity to go nanny for an Italian family during their 2 week sailboat vacation through Croatia, but her work wouldn’t allow her to take anymore time off, so she unfortunately had to return to the states the day she had planned when she made her tickers… Saturday morning.  Since it was going to be her last opportunity to go out in Rome I convinced her to come out with us instead of going home.  With some convincing she agreed, but needed to go home and drop her things off and get changed to go out, and then she would meet us at the Isola.  Nearing 9:00, Helena had already called and said she would meet at N’importe quoi because she didn’t want Cornelius waiting for us, we’ve all turned into horrible Italian time tables, LATE LATE LATE!  Kate and I got espresso pick me ups before paying and leaving.  We took a bus to Argentina, then took the Tram across the river where I got off, leaving Kate on the tram going back to her house near Marconi to get changed and ready to go out!

Friends and Prosecco!
I walked to N’Importe Quoi to find Helena, Cornelius and Phi (who was working).  We hung outside the café for a few minutes, and then we convinced Phi to ask her boss if she could leave.  With permission, we headed toward the Isola to open the bottle of wine in the Piazza at the top of the stairs. We sat around the monument and cheers to Roma then just relaxed for a while.  A bride and her friends came around taking pictures and acting silly for a bachelorette party and I took a picture of the group for them. Around 10:30 we descended down into the Aperitivo at the Isola and found Zoe and her boyfriend and a few others to chat with.  Kate got there around 11:00, and we all sat in a circle enjoying ourselves and the atmosphere of the river.  Convenietly at Midnight I had to use the bathroom, I really didn’t want any singing to go on, so I snuck away to go to the bathroom missing the first 15 minutes of my birthday because of the long line.  However, when I returned to the circle, everyone started singing happy birthday, and they dished out a bottle of Prosecco for me and my 21st birthday! wahoooO!  It was the best! I was so relieved that I had made friends who were so happy to celebrate my birthday with me, and who were so generous and shared all the same passions as me!  I had been nervous about spending my 21st birthday abroad, but it turned out to be just perfect!  12:45ish we left the island, mostly everyone went home, but Kate, Helena and I headed to Testaccio to have a grand ole time at Coyote (where else?).  On the way I found the perfect birthday gift for myself… A roman license plate abandoned on the ground! We stashed it in Helena’s bag, then continued walking to Testaccio.  Once at Coyote we danced the night away until the place closed.  At 5am I got in a cab and headed home, thrilled to wake up at 8:00 and go to work!  I figured since it was Friday and my birthday they would let me out earlier than usual, so I wasn’t too worried about having 2 hours of sleep, I could nap after work!

Aircom Crew L-R Consolato, Me, Francesca, Valeria, Benedetto
So I went into work and right away Francesca and Valeria said Auguri to me. I thanked them, then sat down to do my work!  The day went as normal, us doing our work, having a few coffee breaks and then having lunch around 1:30.  I was secretly hoping that after we had our after lunch coffee, I could do one more thing and then Francesca would say “Cicha, quando vuoi andare, vai” That’s when I would take and extra 5 minutes and then finally say okay Ci vediamo domain, or ci vediamo lunedi!  But that didn’t happen as I was expecting.  Instead she said that Francesco and us had to meet in the Salla di reunione at 3:30 to talk about the Vodafone project. Seriously? I just wanted to go!!!!!  It neared 3:30 and things came up so the meeting was postponed 20 minutes.  Finally, Francesca grabbed her notebook and said lets go! So I grabbed my notebook to start taking notes, we went into find Francesco and he started saying something about Vodafone, then I knew something was up cause it was a little strange feeling and Valeria and Consolato had come in as well, so I look out the door and see Benedetto bringing in a cake with a big ‘21 ‘candle burning on top. Stoppp it, I was so embarrassed! They made me make a speech, I wanted to die.  I basically said thank you for everything, its been great, and it was just so awkward, but then we ate the cake, Valeria cutting it of course (she is the mom when it comes to making the coffee, bringing in Tiramisu, serving things etc) and we enjoyed the cake and although I was mortified by the event, Aircom had made my day J  Soon after that embarrassment Francesca let me leave, and I was off to get ready and to meet my friends at Piazza Trilussa to head to Ivo in Trastevere for dinner.

8:30pm everyone arrived.  I had been walking behind Zoe and her new bright purple hair, so we arrived at the same time, the shortly after Phi, Cornelius and Danielle appeared as well.  Helena had texted me saying she wouldn’t make it to dinner because it was her last day of work and her coworkers took her out, but she would meet up with us wherever we were once she was ready. After we were all there we walked to Ivo in Trastevere and asked for a table outside, and shortly after we were seated to have a delicious dinner.  I finally was able to order the carciofi e melanzane pizza that my mom had ordered with the Ponsetto’s and it was just fantastic.  Dinner was perfect, nice and relaxed and amongst good company, and after dinner, Zoe and her boyfriend left, Phi went to go pick up her friend who was arriving from Venezia, and Cornelius, Helena, Danielle and I headed into Testaccio to find a new club to dance the night away at.  Running on two hours from the night before I was pleasantly surprised that I didn’t feel one bit tired.

When we arrived in Testaccio all of us ladies had to use the bathroom, so we found a bar to go into.  While we were using the facilities and American pub crawl guy came up to us and tried to promote his Coliseum pub crawl.  We obviously weren’t buying into it, but we figured we could get some information out of the guy, so we asked where else he brought his tour besides Coyote, and he told us about a place further down the road that was free of charge. And so off we went! We stayed in a place we found with no cover charge, unsure if it was where the man had suggested, but it was fun, so we danced there until Phi called us and needd help finding the place.  We met up with her and her Italian friend Leonardo from Venice (who still had his suitcase with him), and we headed back to the club we were at.  Around 3:00 we decided to check Coyote out, because Phi and Leo weren’t into the music playing at the first one.  So we went to Coyote and spent the rest of the night there.  Fabian, the French guy we met a few weeks ago, decided to come to meet up with Helena, and around 5:00 I was exhausted and had to catch a train back to Muto at 7, so I ushered Cornelius out along with Danielle, Phi and Leo and we headed to catch the bus.

We all went our respective directions and since Cornelius was heading back to Austria Saturday afternoon, I had to say my final good bye, or See you later.  Too many people would be leaving in the next week, I wasn’t looking forward to it.  But since we all have the same ambitions of travel and language we figured it wouldn’t be far off to say that we would see each other later, instead of it was nice to know you briefly!