Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Birthday Shout-Out: The Hungarian

You've heard of Balint.I've written about him here, here, here, here, here and here.  (If you search by his name, there's more.) You saw our shared travelogue through Hungary and Germany last summer.

He's the music director at my church, and a world-class organist, and also a best friend.

In 2008, the first year I knew Balint, my birthday fell (for the only time in anybody's lifetime) on the Saturday before Easter. We were thusly engaged that afternoon in a multiple-hour rehearsal for the next day's service, me in the chorus and he conducting. As we got ready to start, he welcomed the group and said that before anything else, he needed the orchestra to play something. Which turned out to be a 3-minute polka-style arrangement of "Happy Birthday" he'd composed that morning. That the chorus joined in on halfway through. All of which he recorded and, by 7 p.m. that evening, had burned onto a CD and handed to me. After we ate the cake baked by another friend, which he'd commissioned made.

He takes birthdays seriously, I discovered.

Last year my birthday was on a Monday. We were both down in the dumps at that time, for each our own reasons. But he said if I didn't have plans, he wanted to have dinner. So that night we went together to the supermarket. He bought the groceries and I chose the Trimbach Pinot Gris. We went back to my apartment, where he first fried the fish in crumbs and then baked it with roasted red peppers and cream sauce, and we talked and ate and drank well into the early morning, until we were both sated and in better moods. The way you want to mark the passing of another year but rarely do.

I have lots of good memories with Balint, and assume that they are only the beginning of many more. Because such is the way it is with those who have a lust for life and a loyalty to those dearest.

MY birthday, March 2011 ....
at Eastern Standard with Eszter
(yet another Hungarian)

Today is Balint's birthday. He's despairing a bit at feeling old. Yet, a bunch of us are eating sweets and heading out for drinks after (yet another) choir rehearsal tonight, margaritas being his beverage of downfall. I asked him early this morning if he was ready for the tequila and he replied, "of course!"

Because he takes birthdays seriously.

Best wishes, my friend.

Day 24 of 31: 2.57 miles
Day 25 of 31: 3.8 miles
May Total:  55.28
2011 Total: 267.48


Anonymous said...

Perhaps I am stating (asking) the obvious, or perhaps I am just too new to your blog, but...why aren't you two dating?

Karin said...

@Anonymous. If you've got 2 or 3 free days, I've got a novel's-worth of explanation.