Monday, February 27, 2012

It Happened on a Friday Night . . .

We regularly host friends throughout the year. It could be dinners, swim parties, holidays, the lake house or play dates.  So, last Friday night was no exception. We have been dining out, hosting, traveling with these friends for years, probably seven years to be exact.

As is traditional for this time of year a bunch of our good old friends get together for dinner. Everyone met at our house. Again with the tradition - we had a Hurricane or two . . . and snacked on muffalettas and other appetizers. We chatted and caught up for approximately 1 hour.

One couple showed everyone pictures of their new puppy that is a poodle/labrador mix called a Labradoodle. He was blond and with such a sweet face. His name is Tyler, after the city our friend grew up in and remains so fond of! This couple has a high school junior and three older children either in college or out in the workforce. This is their baby, so just like new parents they competed back and forth about who had a better picture and who the dog loved more!

Another couple talked of his travels and her teaching. She is a third year teacher to 24 1st graders - talk about scary stories! She talked about what is expected of the students and how their parents undermine the authority of the teacher with "You don't have to do that homework" and "She can teach it to you tomorrow." My friend made it clear - she gave the home work so the work can be done at home and she had already taught this - little Susie wasn't paying attention.

The other two couples have 10 year old boys - who despite being at different schools, in different cities and in different grades - they are experiencing the same thing. We talk about how there is a real crush of work now that the end of school year is coming and how the school is pushing to make these boys ready for what is coming their way in middle school. These boys are both disorganization, have feelings of being overwhelmed and just a touch of Spring Fever. I will admit it . . . I have it also.

It was about 7pm when my husband said "I think it is time to leave for the restaurant."

2 couples head out the front door - each in their own cars. I blow out all the candles, cut off the lights and meet up with my husband and our friends.  We are going to ride in one car together . . . my husband’s new car. We headed through the house, out the back door and into the garage. Everyone loads up in the car, garage door open, back gate to the property open. Both are closing and we are on our way to dinner.

Each February/March we host a dinner with friends for Mardi Gras or really for crawfish, mudbugs as we call them!  I don't eat mud bugs but a couple of the guys do. It is a great reason to get together with friends for dinner. We are headed to the best crawfish restaurant in Dallas . . . Pappadeaux!

Our friends wanted to ride with us so HE, the husband, could check out our new car.  So, the show begins . . . Mito is touching buttons, asking questions . . . he is shown all the features . . . the rolling sun shades, independent air seats and how it blows on your back, the heated steering wheel, the force of the car, how the car turns off to conserve gas and minimize emissions when at a complete stop. The radio was jamming; Mito's wife and I just sit back in our back bucket seats and roll our eyes at our silly men behaving like boys.

We arrive at the restaurant in about 10 minutes. Parking is horrible.

There is one SO (State Official) car that is having trouble getting everyone out of his car in a timely fashion, we are waiting behind him. My husband sees a spot open - he goes around the SO car only to have a delivery driver, swerve into his oncoming traffic, takes the spot.

In a total aggressive move . . . . my husband lowers (I was going to say rolled . . . but who rolls their windows down anymore?) the passenger side window.  He asks the delivery driver if he knew he took his spot. What delivery service he is from - BTW he is from the one that gives out gum; it is a two tones square package of red and blue with a stick figure man walking on it. His name is Brian. OH and my husband's law firm have a large account with this delivery document service . . . probably not after last Friday night!

The driver says he didn't notice a car - with headlights that shines right in his eyes. He didn't see someone pulling into that space. "No, Dude . . . I didn't see you." Was all he had to say!

We all do a collective . . . now what!

A spot is opening up but my husband had already gone a little past it. So I say "Stop, unlock my door and I will get out and hold the spot for you." We quickly discuss he needs to go down and turn around.  While he is doing the turn around I will wait in the spot - on the fire line - where the back end of all the cars are in a line. He agrees. Our friend gets out at the same time I do - they are waiting over by the steps that lead up to Pappadeaux.

I wait for the SUV with 4 people to get in and pull out. As soon as they have pulled out I step in the center on the spot on the red fire lane line. I see a small black Mercedes SUV making its way to me. I wave her off, saying "I am holding this spot for my husband."

She inches forward . . .

Cont. tomorrow . . .

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