Another post from The Man — (Read Part I of this Birthday Adventure here)
MP really outdid herself. How to plan an event that provides entertainment for a two-year-old, the Senior Set, and the man of the hour? When we got to the suite, there was a light mode of streamers and other sundry decorations to complement Tow Mater and his balloon brigade.
MP had opted for the amenity for the Hyatt Diamond award (something I am sworn never to do on my business trips – Always go for the points.), which was chocolate-covered strawberries, some delicious peanut brittle made of white chocolate rather than caramelized sugar, a plate of cheeses, pitted olives and flat breads and the delicious aforementioned Cabernet. In my more ignorant and myopic youth, I found wine profane and pretentious. However, as I age, and the beer I prefer fights to permanently orbit my hips, a glass or two of good wine can be a very welcome change of pace.
As I opened the bottle, Little C, determined to enjoy the balcony that overlooks the market and pool below, simply couldn’t hold it any longer. In our rush and traffic delay, we all were marveling at the suite and forgot to take her potty. The deck properly christened, grandma dashed to a neighboring Baby Gap to procure emergency replacement delicates, and the remaining crew flew into action, cleaning child, the balcony (it was a treated surface, so no harm done) and hands in preparation for dinner.
An overwhelming sense of gratitude and happiness filled me at supper. We ate at a table by the pool (hot pool, cool pool, hot pool, cool pool) as Little C took turns in the hot tub and main pool swimming with MP and Grandma Carole. The Hyatt chef cannot be commended highly enough. MP had preordered all of our meals ahead, so we had little to no wait to begin. We’d brought the rest of the first bottle down with us, and ordered waters and Choc Milk to round out the drinks. At some point, the second bottle was procured, and we shared that one happily. The courses were chips with salsa and fresh guacamole, two orders of phenomenal shrimp tacos, an order each of pulled pork and buffalo sliders (divine) and a chicken flatbread pizza that never made it more than seven inches from Grandpa. He shared a piece or two with others, but only out of momentary weakness: I’ve never seen the man consume so much food.
I’ve been to plenty of five-star establishments in my day. Trust me, this one ranks up there. We were all sated, happy to have the company, the fare, a gorgeous Huge Moon night, and a toddler so thrilled to be swimming that she almost wouldn’t leave the pool for birthday cake. Although the patio dining experience was unforgettable, I really wanted to return to the suite for cake; family, comfort, laughs, and an indelible bookmark in time’s tome. I’m fascinated that MP pulled it all off, and did so with such verve and collected calm that I’m even more of a fan.
MP and I lead very busy lives. I write this on descent into McCarren, a two-night business jaunt for more cloud security expertise, having had just three nights at home following my Atlanta trip. As much as I love normalcy and the comfort of my own bed, I wouldn’t recognize it if it snuck up and bit me on the (boarding p)ass. The fact that the middle of the three nights home for me would be spent at yet another hotel wasn’t lost on MP; she prearranged for the elders to take Little C home after opening the “prendents” and sharing cake. MP had packed my essential nighttime kit without my knowledge; she sat serenely with me in the living area of the suite and easily made me fall in love with her all over again. We briefly took a jaunt down to the hot tub to get her a Riesling, and then made our way to bed. From what I hear, I’m a horrid, snoring bear at night, so our routine is that no matter how tired I might be, she falls asleep before me, or not at all. I sat beside her and wrote part I of this post, unable to contain my elation at being treated so well as a son, a father, and a husband, all at once.
I let MP sleep in the next morning, and sat quietly in the living area watching banal TV. When hunger won over my desire not to stir Sleeping Beauty, I ventured in to the bedroom. She was already up, and eager to proceed with the day. Breakfast was at the restaurant, because we were informed that, at this hotel, the free Diamond-status breakfast did not include room service. I have no complaints about our meal. It certainly filled us and prepared us for the day. I read the Journal, MP replied to your comments. Although we missed Little C and the Grands, it was a rare quiet morning that completed the gift.
For the record, if any of you reading this are single and curious what it takes to land such a helpful, giving, knowledgeable and loving spouse, it’s simple: Tecate with fresh cut limes at an apartment pool. Preparing those limes was the best karma I’ve ever conjured. Many of you who read Mommy Points are candid in your opinions and exercise your freedom to share them in comments. I shall do the same. I love you, Summer. I rarely deserve you, but plan to work very hard, daily, for the rest of my life, to do so.