The best birthday ever

3/2/2004 - Duke Blue Devils

(Editor's note: Senior Monique Currie, a 6-foot guard/forward, will share a diary with ESPN.com throughout the season.)

March 2, 2004

Before I begin, I would like to thank Vicki for allowing me to take her place momentarily to do a diary entry. I really don't know where to start since so much has gone on since the last diary, but I will give it a shot. Of course, all of you know that we had a tough loss at Florida State, but I think that might have been the best thing that could have ever happened to us.

Obviously we would have liked to come away with a win, but this gave us the opportunity to take a deep look at ourselves and see where we really want to go this season. We went over our roles again and I definitely think we took more positives away from the loss than negatives.

OK, moving on. We had some pretty good wins after that, especially at North Carolina. At first, we were a little hesitant about playing in the Dean Dome because we really enjoy and are used to playing in Carmichael Auditorium (it reminds us a lot of Cameron). As usual, it turned out to be a great experience and game. The crowd was awesome and I was pleased with the end result!

Finally, my annual homecoming game arrived and we were on our way to Maryland! This trip was a little bit different since we took a charter bus. The ride actually wasn't bad at all. We watched movies, sang songs and mostly everyone slept at least half the ride. I was able to see my friends and family, so it was definitely tough when it was time to go home.

The following week was awesome!! We had three birthdays in the family. Caitlin turned 20 on the 24th, I turned 21 (you know what that means) on the 25th and coach G turned 31 (wink) on the 26th.

I had a great birthday and it was definitely one of the best ever. Iciss told me a few days earlier that she wanted to take me to dinner for my birthday. I thought it was a good idea and was looking forward to having dinner on her.

The day of my birthday I was getting suspicious that something was planned. I was waiting on Iciss to get ready (she is never on time) so that we could go to dinner and her phone kept ringing. The phone ringing wasn't abnormal -- it was just that she would whisper when she answered. So I was thinking something had to be up. This goes on for the whole ride to Outback (one of my favorites). When we got to the restaurant, I saw Alana's car outside (good job, AB), so I knew for sure she had something planned.

But I wasn't prepared for what was inside. The whole team was there! But not just the team, about 10 other friends were there as well. Even Paul (Vicki's boyfriend) was there! It was great. I definitely wasn't expecting that many people to be there. I never knew I had that many friends.

Anyway, those are the kind of things I will miss most when my time here at Duke comes to an end. The friendships, camaraderie, the things that go on off the court are what make basketball so special.

For more on Currie or Duke, visit the Blue Devils' official athletic site.