Originally published at The Last Exit to Babylon. Please leave any comments there.
Tonight, the local Girl Scouts service unit held their annual Daddy-Daughter Dance. I was supposed to take her, but for a variety of reasons beyond my control, we couldn't go. So I was left scrambling to find a way to make it up to her.
I figured we'd start with a nice dinner out, someplace we ordinarily wouldn't be able to go. I was already in my suit, since I didn't find out for sure we couldn't go to the dance until mid-afternoon, so I told her to go ahead and put on the dress she was going to wear tonight and be ready. After some consultation with my friends, I decided to take her up to Shiki. Of all the suggestions I offered her, a Japanese steakhouse with hibachi tables appealed to her most, and I'd been meaning to try this one for a while.
We had an absolute blast at dinner. Our chef was a good one, energetic and entertaining, and chose Brianna as the one to trick with offering a bowl of fried rice on the end of his spatula, then flipping it back over his head to his other hand. She was delighted, and we both ate ourselves almost into a stupor. She had the shrimp, while I went for steak and calamari, and we even splurged on dessert: green tea ice cream for her, and tempura cheesecake for me. One more bite and she would have had to roll me out to the car. I couldn't even eat the wafer-thin mint she offered me.
Next we swung by the house to take pictures. I was trying to include as much as I could from our original plans, and if we were both dressed up, we needed to document the occasion. Unfortunately, I couldn't lay my hands on my tripod, so I had to make due with setting the camera on a table and taking a seated shot of us. She loved it, though, and that's all that mattered.
After that, we went walkabout (drive-about, technically, since it's way too cold for someone with my thin Southern blood to walk outdoors right now) to check out some Christmas lights. We drove around the rich neighborhood of Nichols Hills and enjoyed the light shows the residents had paid people to put up for them. As impressive as some of those were, they paled in comparison before the grandeur of the lights Chesapeake Oil put on all the trees around their offices between Western and Classen south of 63rd. They were bright enough I probably didn't need my headlights, much less any of the street lights. As we drove away from them, Brianna announced from the back seat: "I just can't stop smiling. I don't remember the last time this happened."
Clearly, I had done well beyond my wildest dreams. I had hoped to try and come close to making it up to her for not taking her to the dance, and here she was in such a state of joy over our evening together. It doesn't get better than that.
After totally knocking one out of the park with the lights, I took her on back to her mother's house, and drove up to Sean's for a nightcap. This turned out to be a perfect way to end the evening, spending some time chatting with the staff while enjoying their hospitality. I even got to take some time to discuss their need for a Facebook page with one of waitresses, and will be going back next week to see what I can do to help out with that. Networking at its finest, and a way to help my favorite restaurant and pub get even more exposure.
All in all, a more perfect night than I could have hoped for.