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Hazards of Valentine’s Day Expectations

I wish I had taken my own advice yesterday and not had any expectations for Valentine’s Day. I thought I was safe from letdowns because DH and I were acting on plans previously agreed upon and were going to go out for a fabulously romantic dinner. We get so little time for romance.

I would wear the ball gown that he had only gotten to see during the construction phases, along with the “secret weapon”, jewelry, coat and shoes. I had, if you remember, had to attend the Fur Ball alone while he was on a business trip.

He would make dinner reservations at a nice place and we would go at a time that would allow us to get our late afternoon chores done and still have time to bathe and dress. I can’t eat too late at night because I have a bad case of acid reflux and suffer greatly.

So, we had reservations at 8 pm at a well recommended restaurant new in town and arrived a bit early for dinner. Unfortunately we entered a door that led to the “lounge” where we stood for 5 minutes untill a wait person came up, heard our story, told us to stay right there and rushed off to tell the maitre d’ that we were here. We stood. And waited in our coats.

We were standing next to an empty table for two and another 5 minutes passed when yet another wait person approached and told us to sit there. We said we wanted to sit in the warm dining area, have a proper dinner, and listen to the acoustical guitar and that we wanted to wait in the dining room. She rushed off only to come back later, sitting us at that table “temporarily” and offering to bring us wine but she had no idea where she could find a wine list. She hollared across the room to someone who she intro’d as “the real bartender” who couldn’t find a wine list either. I ordered brandy DH a mixed drink which we drank in our coats because we were seated next to the door.

An hour passed.

We had seating conversations with two more people including the maitre d’, until I got impatient and went to see the dining room. Twice. On the second trip I discovered that they had seated every person who walked in. There was one table for two available next to the guitarist. As I picked the salt and pepper shaker up off the chair and we sat down I related the story of ordering two unwanted drinks and an yet undelivered appetizer. The appetizer was brought but there was no silverware so the guitarist stopped playing, introduced himself as the husband of the owner, explained that they had to rely on unreliable employees, and went to get our silverware. Then he promptly quit playing and went to drink in the lounge.

After moving to a table that was not so drafty and I could finally take off the coat we got dinner at 9:45, half cooked. How do you half-cook a lobster, just wave it over some steam???

So that was our one romantic night away from the cares of being small business owners and managing employees.

It was the same old conversation but we did have it while being well dressed.


About Mary Beth

I am fascinated by changing patterns and colored threads. I sew garments and am teaching myself to machine knit. Since selling the building that housed my workrooms, The Stitchery, I'm searching for a place to set up the knitting machines again. There must be room here somewhere!

8 responses »

  1. At least he got to see you in the dress et al! Too bad about the dinner, though. I remember a time that the Pilot and I had reservations at a well known Chinese restaurant years ago for V Day. I had confirmed that afternoon and was told everything was fine, I had the name of the employee and we got dolled up and arrived to see the line at the door. Confident in our table, we skipped to the front and then found that most reservations had been nullified due to a wedding that was going overtime … We weren’t even offered a GC for the inconvenience. We and many others were not happy that night. Needless to say, they lost their good ratings after that! We ended up in a little greasy spoon Chinese place all dressed up listening to Elevator musak and all … That place is still here, almost 18 years later. Good food, too!

  2. Oh pooh. What a let down. But, at least you got to wear your beautiful dress again.

  3. You’ve had a quite a week. This is one of those things that’s not funny while it’s happening, but will be amusting later. At least you got to wear your lovely gown again!

  4. I’m so sorry to hear about that. As everyone else said, at least you got to wear your gown.

    Because of DH’s travel schedule we can count on being apart for v-day, b-days, and most other special occasions, so we don’t rely on them. A night we are both free to go out becomes special for us, even if it’s just a regular Wednesday for everyone else.

  5. Stephanie, we’re in the same boat and that’s why this “date” was so special. I think that in 17 years of marriage we’ve been able to go out to dinner on our anniversary two times. For most years we don’t bother trying to celebrate on any “special days” at all.

  6. Oh dear – not a good experience at all. The two busiest days in the restaurant business are
    Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day and on top of that it sounds like you were the victim of
    a new place and crew still working the bugs out. You might want to let the owner know about the service and kitchen problems – you’d be surprised how many people never say anything, and usually the owners are grateful to know about the problems.

  7. Oh – I just reread the whole story. The owners are losers!

  8. Yeah losers – they don’t deserve you as customers. I got a $1600 car repair for my Valentine’s present, so I can’t complain.


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