As my bride of many years greeted me one evening, her voice blasted through the door, "Guess what?"
I always take a deep breath on this very leading question. "What?" I asked.
"I just won a sales contest at work and the prize is dinner for two at the new fancy restaurant down by the riverfront!"
Her excitement was contagious. We knew the restaurant was posh because we could only understand parts of the menu. "See? I told you there would be a place for me to wear my new spring outfit," she coyly reminded me.
"Two can play at that game," I responded. "I will wear my gray suit, my Borsalino imported straw hat and a new silk tie. We will be dressed to the nines. This town will never be the same. Almost like our first date."
It was early spring and nearing dusk as the maitre d' escorted us to a table by a window, with a view of the river. And the table was beautifully set, with a smoke-gray tablecloth accented by bright red napkins, lemon slices in the long?stemmed water glasses, fresh flowers -the works.
We reminisced about our children and grandchildren and their impact on our lives. A delicious meal savored in such an atmosphere should be remembered a long time. As it turned out, this will probably never be forgotten.
As the shadows lengthened, the riverboats rocking in their berths, I murmured, "Why don't we sashay down the esplanade like we did in Paris a few years ago? Remember the fun we had?"
Hand in hand, we strolled by the stores. People smiled and nodded. Lots of smiling and nodding, in fact. "I never realized there were so many friendly people as we have seen this evening, dear," I observed.
"Probably your new straw hat. Or the fact that you're such a handsome devil," she countered.
We completed the walking tour past the store windows. After acknowledging many smiles, we found ourselves back at the restaurant, looking at our reflection in the window. It was then that I saw the reason for all the smiles.
Caught in the fly of my trousers and hanging down for all to see was a bright red napkin from the restaurant!