My family was here this afternoon and we had a little get-together, celebrating not only my birthday but also Elaine's, which was yesterday. My parents came up from Friedrichsdorf for the occasion but only arrived late yesterday evening (since they didn't get off their shift until four or so), so they couldn't be there for Elaine then.
Jennifer gave me a copy of Geoffrey Sampson's Writing Systems, which I had heard about on linguaphiles, I believe :D. Ireen gave me some chocolate biscuits and a Dilbert page-a-day calendar. Elaine had sent me an Amazon.de gift certificate by email yesterday. Daddy and Inka gave me some blank CD-RWs, a CompactFlash card for my PDA, and a copy of Unicode Version 4.0. Whee! I wasn't wholly expecting that, because that book is expensive ($75 or so, IIRC).
I was hoping that some people could pool their money and give me half of the money I'd need and I'd pay the rest or something—now I have to tell people not to buy me that book since I already have it.
A while ago, we had got an AOL 8.0 CD in the post. For some reason, I didn't through it out but kept it lying around in the hallway. That came in handy today, because Elaine wants to install her own copy of AOL on her laptop or something, so I gave her the CD. 100 free hours in the first month; she's welcome to it. I'm not interested in getting AOL for myself. I'm probably put off for life because of the associations it carries with me.
At any rate, we had a nice time, they enjoyed the birthday meal Stella had prepared at my request, and we had some nice cake later. (Ireen had made some nice apple cake the way my mother used to do it.
So, I'm well chuffed :)
Update: I just had a look at Amazon.com for the Sampson book and saw a positive review by Sean M. Burke. That's worth a lot in my eyes.