Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day recap

Valentine's Day, 2008 was the first year that I had a Valentine. We had met on New Years day and were pretty much inseparable until geography took its toll on us. I was extremely excited to finally participate in what had been, for the first 28 years of my life, a spectator sport. We made plans to stay in and have dinner since we didn't want to brave the crowds and because I didn't want to run into anyone from work while out on a date (it would have been incredibly awkward).

That morning, I found out that I was the DFAC (dining facility) Officer in Charge, and that there was an "emergency" shortfall of foodstuffs--the inventory done the night before showed $10,000 worth of missing food and we had to re-inventory 100% of what was on hand. This could only start AFTER the DFAC had closed for the night--1830 or so.

I called Lee, cancelled my dinner plans and explained that it might be a late night. I weighed bacon, thyme, lettuce and bread. I counted gallons of condensed milk and spent hours in the sub-zero freezer outside. I counted packets of ketcup and little cups of creamer for coffee until three in the morning and "found" all the unaccounted for foodstuffs. Around two in the morning, my boss's boss showed up. She was in uniform and asked that I meet her in the hallway. She put her hand on my shoulder and said, "I know this sucks. But, someday, you'll look back on your Lieutenant years and laugh about this." I drove to Lee's, half asleep, and crawled into bed only to wake up two hours later for work.

A year later, Iraq.

A year later, Killeen, TX. I was dating someone again, and we had gone out the night before. We were hung over. We slept on separate couches, nursing hangovers, unable to stomach food or drink, watching Iron Chef.

This year? This year, I forgot Valentine's Day was coming. I met a nice kid the weekend before and, over brunch on Sunday, suggested we get dinner the next night (Valentine's Day). Valentine's Day is a high pressure second date! Especially when the first date is watching YouTube videos on my phone and eating omelettes on my kitchen table. But, we went with it. I didn't think it appropriate to bring flowers on date two, so I texted a picture of flowers, and a teddy bear--I didn't want to ignore V-Day either! We went to Chinese Food Buffet (one of my favorite comfort foods), and laughed, and came home to watch a movie. We watched Best in Show, laughed, and then parted ways. There was no kissing or hugging or hand holding, but a lot of laughing and I had a great time.

Not bad, considering the first two Valentine's Days. Who knows if this will pan out to be anything more, but hey...salvaging what could be a horrible day for single people is hard to do, and I think we did it well!


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