Austin, TX was the place to be late May as we celebrated our Drummer Boy’s 13th birthday. It was a celebration to be sure with all the fixings but most importantly awesome community. There are a number of precious people and families in Austin, TX who really care for us when we roll through. Many of them have children who love our son and we couldn’t have asked for a better stop to celebrate his life.
The celebration kicked off the night before the big day at our Persian friend Mehrdad’s home. We met Mehrdad last spring at a house concert that we performed and he kept in touch with us, often times sending little notes of encouragement. When we returned this time, we were so excited to see him and when he found out it was our son’s 13th birthday he was even more excited. He was so happy that he invited us to his home for a special Persian meal and to meet many in his community. The food was amazing and the conversation was even more fantastic as different folks shared their stories. We learned about the history and traditions of their Bahá’í faith, as well as, the persecution they faced in their homeland of Iran. They shared their journeys of coming to the US and gratitude for being able to live and worship peacefully now.
The next day, the BIG DAY, was full of adventure, starting off at one of our favorite Austin taco stands, Torchy’s Tacos where we met our friend Dony Wynn, who last year spent time mentoring our son, encouraging and sharing musical talents.
We fell in love with this ol’ fella after hearing his amazing story growing up in New Orleans, his time as a professional drummer in the rock and roll world, working out the meaning of life as a hermit and now finding passion in the visual arts.
From there we went to a matinée and saw the action packed Spider Man 2 and of course, enjoyed movie theater popcorn.
We concluded our festivities at Zilker Metropolitan Park, which is situated near downtown Austin. It’s a fantastic park and the home to Barton Springs watering hole.
With temps of 90 degrees we were ready to cool off in the fresh spring water. The kids went to the free side of the park and found a large tree along the bank to climb on and jump into the water.
They frolicked for about two hours and then rallied for Texas BBQ from Green Mesquite BBQ, which was just a mile down the road from the park. It was awesome! We ordered take out including a variety of meats for about $60 and everyone brought a salad/drinks to share.
The evening wound down with a red velvet cake that the Malik family made, at our sons request and one last swim. Honestly, we could never have pulled off such a fantastic birthday without our friends, Mehrdad, Dony, The Maliks, The Heikkilas and the Newells. So thankful for community!! In the end, our Drummer Boy felt loved and appreciated. This will be one to remember!
On a side note: A few months ago we asked our little Drummer Boy, what would you like for your birthday and he responded confidently and quickly, “a Bob Marley CD and a bag of chips.” What? He totally stopped us in our tracks and we all just looked at him dumbfounded. First off, we were totally expecting some expensive video game request and secondly, he had never shown interest in Reggae or anything acoustic before. I mean, he plays in our Folky/Americana acoustic based band but has always drifted towards heavier sounds. For the first time, our little dub step, metal core son was speaking our language! Who knows how and when kids pick stuff us, but the request totally cracked us up and we couldn’t resist.