My husband and I had a date yesterday morning.
We left our 7 year olds watching a Saturday morning movie and our teenager and adult niece sleeping in. I put on mascara and earrings, and we drove up to the farmer’s marketing in the parking lot of our town’s community college.
Our tradition of spontaneous dating began several years ago when our first child – our only child at the time – was 5 years old. She was invited to play at a friend’s home, and as my husband and I stood on the curb, waving good-bye, he turned to me and asked “Want to go to Home Depot with me?” We’d almost never been together, without our child, in five years. I could have gone back inside to tackle housework and laundry, but instead I said “yes” and we wandered through the aisles of Home Depot looking at boxes of pipe fittings and drill bits and discussing our dream kitchen. A tradition was born! Now anytime we find ourselves out without children – a grocery store run, a drive through the post office parking lot to mail Christmas cards – we consider it a date.
Although we live in a suburb south of San Francisco, yesterday was reminiscent of a morning in the city with a clean cool breeze blowing in from the Pacific, raising goosbumps on my bare forearm even as I shaded my eyes from the brilliant sun.
There was a long line at the wonderful french bakery stand, so my husband told me to wait in it while he got us coffees from the nearby coffee truck.
As I stood in the bakery line, watching a man make balloon animals and banter with young children, my husband sauntered back with coffees in each hand and leaned in for a kiss before handing me my tall latte. A kiss without a chorus of groans and “ews” from the peanut gallery we’d left at home!
We strolled arm-in-arm through the market, admiring the heirloom tomatoes and ruby strawberries. We chatted with vendors and sampled goat cheese and biscotti. No hurry, no agenda.
Forty minutes later we finished our tour of the market and drove slowly home, munching on our fresh croissants, discussing neighborhood news, and admiring the view as we drove over the hill.
My date dropped me off in front of the house before heading to work. I walked inside to find two 7 year olds watching a movie and the older girls still asleep.