to even consider ever buying me a birthday present after this is simply laughable
it's not so much that i returned from work on friday (after 13,476 drinks that one of my friends poured down my throat in order to forestall my arrival home) to a bitchin' surprise party. no it wasn't just that. although, as a side note, have you ever had a surprise party thrown for you? it's very strange. you walk into a room and all of a sudden you see all these incongruous faces, from far flung corners of your life, in your living room just hanging out and having a laugh at your expense and you wonder why your mother in law is sitting in your kitchen chillin' with college mates and, sweet!, all of a sudden all these people who you like but probably don't like each other are offering you lots of free wine. yes. the party was truly a surprise. and it was fun. but wait, there was more.
the true magnificence of mrs nice guy was revealed to me when she dropped the bomb: my actual gift was that we were going to washington, dc, the following day to have dinner with friends. but wait, there was more. the following night the two of us were to drive out to virginia to dine, and sleep, at the inn at little washington.
did you just stop breathing? no? that's because you must not know what the inn at little washington is, you silly person. this, alas, is where words fail. mr nice guy shall eventually write a separate entry on the menu alone, but it was, quite simply, the best meal i have ever eaten in my life -- exactly what you'd expect from what is widely viewed as one of the top two? three? restaurants in the country, one of the singular dining experiences to be had anywhere. this is to say nothing of the accommodations themselves, which were the apotheosis of decadence. the service was gracious, professional, never obsequious, always classy. it was superbowl sunday so there were, amazingly, vacancies. so we were upgraded to an even nicer room. un-freakin-believable.
anyway. all that was to tell you the following about my lovely wife. there we were in our finest finery, drinking afternoon tea (in hot anticipation of the dinner to come) simply agog at the garden, the koi pond, the itsy scones and bite-sized niblets. we looked deeply into each others eyes. we giggled like children. we played footsie, genteelly, under the table. she sighed as i sipped my perfect vanilla tea and said to me: "happy birthday. now begins your long, slow march to death."