Quote of the Day: “A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.”
- Herm Albright
Our 20th anniversary is coming up next week but we are going to our daughter’s freshman orientation that night so we decided to go out tonight to celebrate.
But first, I got back into my running groove by getting back into the long Saturday runs. I had a little help in the form of Sam, the General’s Aide, who is going to be running Wild Wild West and Bishop 50-Mile Ultra with me this year.
He joined me at 0700 this morning and I introduced him to P-Canyon as we tackled a 12-mile run.
I felt like “Coach Viper” since he had never run a trail marathon, a 50-mile run, nor the P-Canyon route before. I had a lot to pass and we actually made pretty good time while I gabbed almost the entire time. We did sub-10 minute miles (10-minute miles is the goal on long training runs) so I was happy, especially considering I’ve been out of the long training runs since…
… I don’t even want to look back and do the calculation. Let’s just say it’s been a LONG time. TOO long.
Anyway, I also ran into my friends from the running group I used to join up with every Saturday. They had not seen me in almost a year and I was sure they thought I got shipped off to war and got killed.
Driving home, I called up my good friend Paola and asked her where a good place would be to take Carrie for our anniversary. I didn’t want Olive Garden or really anywhere where there would be jeans and babies in high chairs.
Money was no object. After all, she HAS put up with me for 20 years. That deserves something special.
Paola gave me a few option but the one that sounded the best was right on the water and was mainly a seafood joint. I detest seafood but I know Carrie loves it and since this was all about her, I knew going to a seafood place was a gesture that spoke volumes.
When I got home, I called the Chart House and made reservations as close to sunset as I could get.
Then I took a nap and was glad Carrie didn’t check my pulse because she would have probably called an ambulance. I was as out as out gets and when I awoke, I felt heavily sedated. I guess I was a little bit in the red when it came to sleep. Last week was a little rough and the first long run in awhile took its toll.
We made our way to the Chart House on the ocean and we were dressed to the hilt. I was even in a coat and tie (which took me about a half hour to get right). Carrie’s dress was stunning and if I do say so myself, we made a breathtaking couple.
There was no choice but to valet park but like I mentioned before, money was no object and if you know the depth of my cheapassedness, you would know how much that says.
We got seats near the window that overlooked the ocean and we could see surfers. It was going to be a magnificent sunset and we had front row seats.
Our waiter, who was coincidentally named “Jason”, looked like a surfer himself. A Patrick Swayze-esque hairdo topped the look off and while he offered his congrats when I announced why we were there, it did not garner us any discount. But that’s OK, the night was just about the two of us and the experiences we have shared in the last two decades.
Perusing the menu, I wanted to make sure I didn’t make Carrie feel bad for being at a seafood restaurant. I made sure that I was in the frame of mind where I would accept anything they had to offer and since money was no object, I decided to follow suit with what she was having.
Much to her surprise, I echoed her order when James Dalton took her order after announcing that nobody pus baby in a corner.
Fillet minion and Australian lobster. Yes, folks, steak and lobster for the both of us.
And it was gooooooooooooood!
Most of you know, I’m not a big lobster guy. I’m not red all over and have big snapper claws for hands.
I think one of the reasons that is has to do with it being too close to “fish” which I abhor but probably has more to do with the fact that I worked in a Black Angus in high school and the only lobster I got was the leftovers (cold and rubbery.)
But tonight, it was some of the greatest food I’ve ever dipped in butter and let melt in my mouth.
I will save the details of our conversation because it was just for the two of us but the overall theme was a recollection of all the places we’ve lived in the last 20 years, how we started, where we are today, and where we are going.
It was an absolutely wonderful dinner with a beautiful woman and tantalizing conversation.
The mood was topped off when the sun dipped into the ocean and the entire restaurant stopped to watch in mesmerized silence. Even the waiters stopped and everyone was staring out the plate-glass windows, faces bathes in golden light.
When the last sliver of sun dipped below the ocean, the place erupted in applause and the normal sound of silverware, glasses, and dinner conversation resumed.
We even had the lava volcano cake thing which represented about three times the amount of calories any ultrarunner should take in during Badwater!
For the sake of Pete, it was drizzled in Godiva chocolate!
After dinner, I wanted coffee but instead of Starbucks, we decided to go to Borders because along with coffee, they have my other passion: books. I didn’t want to stay there long, just wander the aisles a little, away from Carrie as I explored and bringing books back to her I thought were interesting.
Meanwhile, she got approached a couple of times by Borders Casanovas who probably troll in such places and are not used to seeing a beautiful woman in a dinner dress perusing the shelves.
I, on the other hand, was not approached.
It was a wonderful night and we went home happy, returning to our two teenage kids who once again reminded us how lucky we were and what we have created over the last 20 years.
And Buster’s dumb ass was there too.
Free Advice for Today: “Give generously.”
- H. Jackson Brown, Jr.