On those seemingly rare occasions when everything falls into place and events proceed as though following the script of a romantic classic, it's good to savor the moment. I've been savoring now for 28 hours...
My wife and I escaped our home last Saturday night to enjoy an evening of unfettered relaxation. We'd engaged the kids' favorite babysitter, and left the house with a simple plan, only 3 generally-defined destinations.
We arrived for Catholic Mass at the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis at about 4:30. We were early, and discovered a wedding party just departing. As we entered the church, I was drawn back to my childhood attendance of Mass at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Sleepy Eye. Though the church of my childhood is somewhat less grand than the Basilica, the notable similarities helped inaugurate our evening with pleasant reminiscence.
Once Mass had concluded, we returned to the car and drove the 3 blocks to the Walker Art Center for a walk through the Sculpture Garden before finding our way to dinner. Our leisurely stroll took us past the well-known Spoonbridge and Cherry, and we discovered the 20.21 Restaurant on the 2nd floor of the Walker when we looked through a directory of the WAC facility. The restaurant looks out over Hennepin Avenue as it transitions from uptown to downtown Minneapolis, and offers views of the sculpture garden, the Basilica, and the Minneapolis skyline. We had no reservation, and when I checked with the host he informed me the only available seating was outside on the balcony. You can imagine how distressing we found it to be forced to sit in the cool breeze under a beautiful sky with much more space near our table than any of those indoors LOL!
During our walk we'd decided on a light dinner, maybe just salads. As it turns out, the 20.21 has a wonderful menu of appetizers, and we tried a couple of items that looked interesting. I was particularly taken with their spring rolls, and Kim wanted to try the tomato lobster salad. We shared both dishes family-style, along with a tasty Riesling.
We talked of wings and strings and sealing wax and other fancy stuff, and drank in the view along with the wine. The conversation, the food, the view, and the fruity vintage intertwined in a warm tapestry of romance, suggesting endless possibilities for the remaining hours.
Suffice it to say that we pursued a number of those endless possibilities before returning home to relieve the babysitter, and the mood continued into the morning and throughout the day.
It never ceases to amaze me that, after 18 years of marriage, the romance is as exciting and deeply satisfying as it's ever been. We'll continue to nurture it and, with luck, I'll be posting similar stories 18 years hence.