It's Alvina's birthday! To celebrate the birthday of my oldest friend (oldest meaning longest friendship, not oldest as in age), I sent her what I've long suspected are the key to a children's book lover's happiness. CUPCAKES!
But, the process of getting sugary sunshine to Alvina was quite harried. What seemed so straightforward: simply call the bakery and place my order became relatively complex--due to a bad phone connection and a foreign baker. Here is an excerpt of my conversation:
"Could you put letters on the cupcakes," I ask, "I'd like it to spell out 'Happy Birthday, Alvina."
"Yes," the man said, "Happy Birthday, Albina."
"No," I say, "Alvina--like Alvin with an 'A'"
"Albina," the man repeats.
"With a 'V'" I say.
"Yes, yes," he says, "With a 'B'"
"No, 'V'" I say, "V like vote."
"Yes," he says, "B, like boat."
"No," I say, "V like very."
"Yes," he says, "B like berry."
"V like venom?" I offer.
"D?" he says, "Denim?"
"vacuum?" I suggest.
"Oh, ok," he says, "I have it 'V' like backroom."
At this point, I decide to take his word for it and trust that a successful transaction has occurred. However, later, I must admit defeat. For instead of being sent to 'Alvina Ling' the cupcakes are sent to 'Albino Lane.' Happy Birthday, Albino!