Today is my birthday. Since moving here 15 years ago, I've cursed the fact that it occurs during the busiest time of the year in tourism, which generally means that I don't see Mr A. Unless of course I make the journey to wherever he is working, and he can fit in a few minutes with me. But this heat makes it difficult to attempt the bus journeys, and it's a Sunday which means the village bus only runs every two hours.
It would be nice if it was a little cooler, and I could at least sit outside and enjoy a glass of wine. But no...this intense heat finds me in the bedroom either on the laptop, or napping. Anything that needs doing like housework, washing, ironing, watering the garden, etc, has to be started around 5am, because by 8am it's far too hot for any kind of physical exertion.
I had just one birthday card today, from my brother, and that's only because he gave it to me when I was in England in April. I love my brother. He is so thoughtful, and his cards are wonderful. Carefully chosen for the most appropriate words, that always make me shed a tear. There may well be other cards on their way (I know of two or three that are) but they could arrive any time with the postal service the way it is here.
Mr A, like many men, isn't good at remembering birthdays. It only happens if the date happens to come up in conversation up to a week beforehand (what I mean is that I usually drop a casual hint!).
But this year I didn't say anything. And I wasn't expecting him home until next Wednesday, so I just resigned myself to today being just another normal day.
At around 10.30pm last night, I was in bed reading and Mr A phoned. "I'm outside" he said. What a surprise. I got up and unlocked the door, and in he came with a present, a birthday cake and a bottle of wine. The present is a practical one, and not something many would consider suitable for a birthday present, but I am delighted with it. It is a lightweight upright vacuum cleaner that I have wanted for some time now, but it wasn't on my list of priorities.
My daughter had sent him a message yesterday saying "Don't forget it's Mum's birthday tomorrow". How sweet of her, but apparently he had remembered because he bought the vacuum cleaner three days ago, not knowing which day he would be able to get home.
We enjoyed the cake....chocolate with layers of cream and crunchy honeycomb, with white chocolate curls on top, and covered with caramel and pistaccio nuts, and a glass of wine. Delicious.
This morning my daughter skyped me and she, son-in-law, Billy and Jimi all sang Happy Birthday to me. It was just lovely. The only fly in the ointment was that there was something wrong with either my microphone or her speakers, because they couldn't hear me, and try as we might we couldn't solve the problem. But at least I could hear them. "Give Nanny a kiss" my daughter said. So the boys both kissed the laptop screen several times which was both funny and touching.
Today I'll eat some more cake and drink more wine. I'm on my own, but it hasn't been such a bad birthday after all.