Small Talk

AARP Date Night

February 26th, 2010

We end up having date night about once a month. We are often tired by evening and lack the energy to go out on weekends. When we have the energy, we don't have a sitter. Now and then, it all comes together and we get to go out on the town.

Well, that's a relative term, I guess. I asked my mom to babysit on Friday night so we could have a date. We like to start early, because we like to be in bed by 9 p.m. "Come at 6," I requested.

"How long will you be out?" she asked.

I calculated how long dinner at the little restaurant down the street would take. This is America. People don't linger like they do in Europe. An hour should do it.

"Um... till 7:30," I replied.

There was a pause. And then snickering. "That's all?" she asked, poorly hiding her incredulity.

I actually felt a little embarrassed. This, after all, is an 80 year old woman who regularly stays out way past my bedtime. "Oh. Welllllll. 8 o'clock, then."

"OK," she said in a more approving tone.

Next thing you know, my mom will be picking out a sexier dress for me and making sure we book at a romantic restaurant instead of the casual neighborhood cafe. I'm in my 30's and I still need my mom.


My dad makes fun of me, too. He, on a more regular basis. He has regular meetings for his various clubs, symphony tickets, or social dinners. They are often just starting their night at 7, when I'm wrapping mine up.

I see or talk to my parents five to seven days a week. About once a week, a conversation goes like this: I ask "How'd your dinner go?" My dad will say, "We drove by your house on our way out. I guess you were sleeping. It was all dark in the Ako household." Then he'll chuckle.

I know my world is small and dull. I still like it.

I blame Olivia. We get into the night time routine at 5ish. We eat dinner, clean up, shower, brush teeth, blow dry hair, and scramble into my bed for a story. When the lights go out by 7:30 p.m., I cuddle with her for at least five minutes.

On Claus' two nights a week that he leaves for jujitsu, I usually fall asleep in bed with her. He comes home and puts her in her room. I love those nights. I love the feel of my little girl lying next to me, all sleepy sweetness, in that big, cushy bed. This is partially why I've stalled in returning to jujitsu myself.

The other nights of the week, he gives it a five minute time limit then carries her, drowsy, to her room. Then he comes back to our bedroom and tries to make me get out of bed and hang with him in the living room. It doesn't always work. Sometimes I insist on staying in bed.

*sigh* So many of my evenings start with big plans. I think I'm going to get up and do more work or get through that stack of magazines, after we put Olivia to sleep. And then I get in that warm, cozy, wonderfully soft bed and I'm a prisoner to its charms. Aah, there's always tomorrow.


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5 Responses to “AARP Date Night”

  1. maxcat:

    Memories. My wife and I used to go out quite a bit when we were younger and through say our 40s we were out and about quite a bit. When we hit our 50s we set Thursday night as date night. Most, but not all Thursdays we either went out to eat together or met someplace, but like you we found that we were usually home by 9 pm. I think as we got older we enjoyed going out to lunch more too, plus lunch is cheaper. We also liked brunches and Hawai'i has great ones.

    The other thing we both liked to do was shop together. A lot of it was flea markets or swap meets or just Chinatown on Saturday mornings. She was a premier shopper and she liked the hunt for a bargain. She definitely liked to dress and she would sometimes just call and say meet me at such and such store. Usually, she wanted my opinion on a dress or an outfit and she would have two or three things she would want me to look at. Call me crazy, call me in touch with my fem side, but I thoroughly enjoyed doing that. The amazing thing is that she really wanted my opinion on how something looked on her. I really miss that.

    This is not to say that she wanted me with her 24/7. She didn't. Still remember when I retired from the military before I began my second career. There really wasn't much gap -- about two months. But, I clearly recall retirement from the military. Her comment then was, "Just because you took off your uniform, that does not mean you are gonna be home 24/7. I can't handle you being home 24/7." LOL, I never was nor was she.

  2. hawaiiobsessed:

    I hear you! Lunch dates would work better for us. ha ha. Somedays it is all we can do to stay up til 8 pm so we can put the kids to bed so we can.... go to bed and go to sleep! Once in awhile one of us just can't hang on til 8 and go to bed before the kids, leaving the other one to do bedtime duty by themselves! You sure would never have thought that at 18 or in your early 20's huh? :>)

  3. Rosette:

    with my husband crazy work hour ....I go to lunch instead...but if he want to play hockey during winter ..then I will do lunch when he has nothing to do ....have you tried sitting with a guy during lunch talking about himself and his work..well....hmm..let me think lets do lunch when hmm....once in the blue moon!

  4. m@x:

    Great stories, Diane and Maxcat! It's stories like yours that make me a faithful reader of your blog; it's full of your personal experiences that people have also had and can share. The story of your yellow lab still gets me right in the heart for I know the pain of losing a sweet, faithful companion. As changes happen with The Honolulu Advertiser, I hope that your blog and those of others bloggers will endure.

  5. Scott:

    I've been out of work and in a new town for a few months now (streaming Hawaiian 105 KINE, though). I think my wife likes having me around, though she encourages me to go to the gym, play golf and go see a movie quite often.....seeing that I have the physique of (1998) Brad Pitt, the golf skills (not morals) of Tiger Woods, and the directorial eye (again, not morals, of Roman Polanski), I can't understand why she'd want to get rid of me for hours upon hours at a time......?

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