So today is the 21st anniversary of my 21st birthday. I will save you the trouble. I am 42 today. How the hell did that happen? I remember it taking FOREVER to get to my 21st birthday. From 18-21 though only 3 years seemed like an eternity! Though I did have some help from my friend Joanie Jacamoni. She was a 21 year old, blond hair, blue eyed college student from Connecticut. On occasion she would be my alias on Friday and Saturday nights. Joanie and I really had no resemblance to each other but that didn’t matter. I could have produced an ID with the picture of someone from a completely different race and I would have still been able to get into the Spaghetti Club. I am sure some of my readers remember the Spaghetti club…the beers were cheap, the guys were cute and the night wasn’t complete without a few drunken rounds of us singing “December 1963” or the song better known as “Oh What a Night”. God those were fun times! I think my Fisher friends should all meet there for a reunion.
I was living in Spain when I turned 21. Over there they don’t really have a drinking age so turning 21 isn’t the big deal it is over here. There would be no drunken pub crawls, no going out with older friends to be initiated (at least legally anyway) no walks of shame the next morning. Remember those S.L.? I think you and I made the most epic walk of shame. Ever. So not to feel like I was missing out on anything I decided to do something fabulous for my 21st birthday. I went to Switzerland for a long weekend…by myself. I visited the United Nations in Geneva..went to the International Red Cross Museum ( I was still young and idealistic and wanted to write global, child welfare policy so I was in my nerdy glory) and went sightseeing through the Alps.
The night of my actual 21st birthday I got all dressed up…even had a skirt on if you can believe that…and took myself out to a very swanky restaurant. I hate looking like a tourist and at that time considered myself very cosmopolitan so I would always decline the English menu and opt for the menu in the native language. So they handed me a menu in French. Now, remember, I was living in Spain at the time and could manage quite well within the confines of the Spanish border. I knew nothing about French. Sorry Ms. Forti…I really should have paid more attention in your French 1 class. But, I was not going to let my complete lack of ability to read the menu deter me. As the waiter approached I pretended to study all of my options. When it was time to order my dinner I said in my worst French accent, “blah-blah-blah…blah-blah…blah… avec champagne si vou plez”…in his worst English accent the waiter says you want, “blah-blah-blah…blah-blah…blah with champagne”. Oui. He again repeats what I order and confirms, yet again that I would like a glass of champagne with my meal. OUI! Now I am getting impatient. So he brings me a glass of chilled champagne and smirks at me as he puts down my dinner. Turns out I ordered a fried egg with cheese. Of course I played it off like that is EXACTLY what I wanted for dinner. Bon appetite!
Oh, I almost forgot! I either almost had the most romantic encounter with a European aristocrat or I almost became the inspiration for one of the Taken movies. So earlier that day I was having some coffee at an outdoor café… This beautiful man, the kind you only see in movies or magazines comes and sits at the table next to me. He was a bit older than me…by maybe 25 years or so…but he was jaw droppingly handsome so I didn’t care. He strikes up a conversation with me and we are having a really good time chatting. He tells me that he lives up the mountain a little way and if I wanted he would love to show me around the little town he was from. Now, of course I wanted to go. Who wouldn’t want a personal tour of the Alps from a Peirce Brinson look-a-like? But I thought better of it. Now, like I said, I could have missed my chance to marry into European Royalty or I could have been chopped up into little pieces and strewn about the beautiful Swiss Countryside. I will never know…
Fortunately, I survived my Alpine adventure…looking back now and having seen the movie Taken I am not sure I would let my girls move to a foreign country at 20 years old.
Now, here I am 21 years later. So for as slow as my first 21 years went by, the second 21 years have flown by!! I cannot believe that I am 42. I do kind of throw up in my mouth a little every time I say it. I had a hard enough time turning 40…thankfully Chuck planned an amazing weekend away to soften the blow. That being said, I can’t believe that was 2 years ago!!! I wrote a blog post about turning 40…I will have to repost it. I thought it was kind of funny. Surprise, surprise…I ended up getting pregnant when I was 40 so that probably has made the past 2 years fly by. But remember when you were young? 40 seemed SO old! Now I am officially “in” my 40’s and I don’t feel old. I still feel like I need to get someone’s permission when making big decisions…I don’t feel old enough to be responsible for someone else’s life, let alone 3 little lives… I don’t feel old enough to be getting mammograms…I don’t feel old enough to be having parent/teacher conferences… I don’t feel old enough to really be called middle aged…I guess I should channel my inner Joanie Jacamoni and have a good old fashioned out-out night and I am sure that will make me feel my age in no time!