Friday, December 02, 2011


Two days after successfully running a reception at work to celebrate the beginning of Albania's centenary, I received an invitation from friends to a birthday dinner at a local restaurant.

It was my first visit to this establishment, where, I found out, one would entertain foreign guests because of its ambience and good food. Upon arrival, I was impressed by its décor and atmosphere. The rustic setting has in its center a huge working fireplace used for cooking, and its light fixtures are covered with handmade linen covers, which are woven in the northern city of Shkoder, as well as their beautiful red tablecloths.
As the party gathered I realized I was the only ‘outside’ member, totally unrelated to the birthday person and his entire family, but I was honored to be considered by all part of their extended family, which I have known now for almost two decades.
The individual being celebrated is married to a vivacious and energetic wife (a psychologist), and they have two daughters.
There are now grandparents, so far from one daughter, of two beautiful grandchildren.
Various courses of foods (including some exceptionally delicious grilled meats) were served by an attentive and friendly staff.
The conversation was lively throughout the evening, and by the time the cake was served everyone also joined in singing and dancing.

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