On My Birthday

A year more than 22, A year less than 24, one more year of adventure, and A year less to explore. Having your birthday is like coming to an end and starting a new beginning. Having simultaneously a year more and a year less. How interesting is that? If you are home, you go out with friends, you spend time with your family and you receive gifts that you may never use but on-board ship, however, you are lucky if anyone knows it is your special day.

Luckily for me, there were a couple of special people that made sure I wasn’t forgotten on my birthday. My roommate Emily paid for our crew tour so we could see monkeys together and my other friends Julian, Benjamin, Nicholas, and Jade tagged along too:). It took us like an hour to take the cable car up to the top of the rock in Gibraltar, but it was an amazing experience, not only did I love the monkeys, but I had never ridden a cable car before! That was my accomplishment for my 23rd birthday.

Later, Julian and Me went off to take pictures of the monkeys and the incredible sights from the top of the mountain. Emily went about on her own trying to get her amazing pictures as always and Nicholas and Jade disappeared. Later I found out they went to buy me a birthday present lol they are so sneaky. The funny thing is I was pretty naive about the whole thing. The day before, Emily told me she was working on art project when I questioned her about taking color pencils to our room from work , it didn’t even occur to me that she was working on my birthday card. Apparently, I am a really good person to plan around without getting noticed.

As the afternoon came around we all separately made it back to the ship for my birthday dinner at The Pinnacle, which is one of the fancy restaurants on-board the ship, all of us except Emily. It seemed we all had a misunderstanding and she didn’t know that we had left. She ended up not making it to dinner. We were worried about her, and simultaneously understood why she could be upset, even though it wasn’t our intention to leave without her. We continued to enjoy our dinner and Jade bought a bottle of champagne in honor of my birthday for us to share, it tasted horrible for me since I am not an alcohol person, but it is the thought that counts.

Ship life can’t always be all fun and games so at 7:00 pm I headed to work after eating delicious chocolate cake and blowing out my candles thanks to the finely planned details by Jade. At 10:00pm work was over so I headed to the officer’s bar to spend time with some of my other friends who were busy throughout the day and couldn’t join me. Come to find out that there was a mini party for me there too thanks to Jade and Emily! They had decorated the space with balloons, written posters that said Happy Birthday Natalia, and had managed to order another beautiful cake this time it was carrot cake and I was in heaven!!! It is my favorite. I guess Jade listens to me, after all, lol.

My friends John, Aussie, Marcus, JT, Sherwin, Matt ….and many more stopped by to wish me a happy birthday. Even the next day the hallways were still filled with happy birthdays from some of my acquaintances that had not realized that it was my birthday the day before. Closing the night I checked Facebook, and found many messages from my loving friends that at the moment are so far away, and it made me smile to think that even though we aren’t close at this moment, we are always there for each other.

Needless to say, my birthday was missing a key person who I share this event with every year, my mom. I really appreciated the time she took to write me a message and I received one from my stepdad as well. My birthday was amazing surrounded by those near and far, I couldn’t have asked for a better one. Cheers to my 23rd Birthday!

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