Wednesday Sept 22 – I walked into the Marriot Hotel to meet Helen and her team brainstorming towards the grand finale of the exotic getaway soiree. I wasn’t in the least surprised to meet her actively involved in planning the weeks success. That’s just who she is.
Dr. Helen Adesuwa Uzamere, Commissioner of Management Services at City of Mount Vernon, New York, Professor, Seidenberg School of Computer Science at Pace University marked her ‘double nickel’ 55th birthday at the perfect getaway destination of Lisbon, Portugal. She was joined by family, friends, and admirers, one of whom, Jennifer Izekor appropriately described her by defining acronyms to her name; ADESUWA. A-Adventures, D-Determined, E-Excellent, S-Sweet, U-Unapologetic, W-Wonderful, and A-Amazing.
Day1: Sept. 22, 2021: Cocktail welcome reception
The celebrant’s suite was the appropriate venue to meet for light Hors d’oeuvres, a little dancing and sharing of travel experiences. A few surprise attendees added to the excitement of the night.
Day 2: Sept. 23, 2021: birthday dinner at Tamariz by the ocean
Daily Fellowship at breakfast was perfect to start the day with attendees in a reserved room at the Marriot Hotel. As more guests arrived from various destinations, a more formal birthday dinner had been scheduled. The Tamariz restaurant by the ocean was splendid. We arrived right on time to share the experience of the sunset. A five-course dinner complete with duice de leche fondant as dessert was an insight to the fun activities that Adesuwa had planned for the weeklong shindig. Starters included homemade meat croquete and fish soup.
Day 3: (Sept. 24, 2021): Bus Tour of Lisbon
We embarked on a tour of Lisbon best known for its colonialist history, ornate architecture, and tradition of Fado music. But some of its best features that we experienced were the everyday – spectacular hilltop vistas in Alfama or at St. George’s Castle, Belem Tower by the Tagus River, pleasant weather, and friendly locals. A quick tea stop at Versailles and a surprise birthday shoutout to a guest added a sparkle to the tour.
Day 3: (Sept. 24, 2021): Quiz Night
Later that evening, guests formed teams to participate in a quiz contest. Prizes were presented to the winning group.
Day 4: (Sept. 25, 2021): Gala Night
I’m glad to say that I diplomatically voted for the use of the Mediterranean hall, venue of the gala night and the climax of the memorable weeklong events. A cocktail hour had been set in the garden by the pool where a saxophonist’s serenaded guests as they enjoyed fruits, sautéed shrimps, and wine.
The gala was a beehive of activities with lots of dancing, entertainment, braised lamb, and lobsters to re-energize. A combination of 3 DJ’s and 2 MCs made for an awesome outing.
Tributes in honor of the celebrant also formed highlights of the night some of which are abbreviated below.
- By God’s Grace, she is more beautiful than “Helen of Troy’, super mum, accomplished, fashionable, hardworking, cheerful, amiable, resilient, self-disciplined, loves celebrating others, God-fearing, and other positives. We’re very proud of you and blessed to have you. – Mom
- Dr. Helen Adesuwa Uzamere, a fantastic and innovative event planner, engaged everyone with meaningful and interesting activities with sumptuous four-course meals and snacks. The turn-out was huge and the attendee’s expressed satisfaction and were happy to have attended.
- Lovely pictures, beautiful videos of beautiful people and a beautiful soul Adesuwa brought us all together to celebrate with her, old friends, and new ones, awesome. Thank you Adesuwa for having us all.
Adesuwa in her response stated, “This weekend celebration topped any venture I have ever embarked on. I want to express my gratitude to everyone who fought all obstacles to join me this past weekend. You endured the reality of a pandemic, and you shared my vision of coming together to celebrate life while we still have it.If I ever doubted that I was loved, I got my answer this weekend. Thank you to my mom and siblings who were determined to make me happy. To my children Ese and Shioma who know it is pointless arguing with me when I set my mind on projects that steals their time, thank you. Please indulge me and allow me to give special shout outs to Chelsea, Kemi, Chioma, Osaze, Austin, Amen, Aramide, Marsha, Ifeanyi, Ana Paula, Manuela and Adebayo Jones for going over and beyond to ensure that this was a success…”
Tosan Aduayi writes and photographs from Mansfield, Texas – firstname.lastname@example.org (WhatsApp – +18175382145)