Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Serendipity, baby

I still have some afterglow after last night's date.

Up until the very end Dave wouldn't tell me were we were going, just that I should dress up.

When we got on the highway I had narrowed it down to two places.

I had first thought we might be going to the little Italian restaurant on Danforth where he had planned to propose. As it turned out that night we were given a table in the corner, and there wasn't enough space for him to propose there. (I wondered why he was so upset about where we were sitting that night.)

My second guess, though, was right.

We paid the requisite arm and leg fee for parking, and walked toward the CN Tower.

The top floor accessible to the public is the renowned restaurant 360. For those who don't know, it's the restaurant atop the CN tower, which revolves slowly so you see the view from every angle while you enjoy the kitchen's award winning cuisine. We walked past the various cues of people and took the elevator to the top, ears popping every few seconds. We were seated at a table right next to the glass.

The noise of the other parties quickly faded behind us. We spent most of the dinner quietly gazing in each others' eyes. We didn't talk about much, both of us just seemed so relaxed and into the moment that conversation wasn't necessary. Much that was said was unspoken.

As we were seated and browsed the menu, we passed the spot where we got engaged, along the lakefront beside the Westin Harbour Castle that cold February night. We instantly recalled the view from our hotel room that weekend overlooking the sugar refinery and the lake. We pointed out other landmarks we knew, and occasionally talked about the days and years to come. We watched the ferry crossing over to the Islands and the Island airport, still, below us. We watched what looked like tiny origami boats racing across the waters.

In our relationship I'm definitely the worrier. I wonder, sometimes aloud, how is it that two people who are so different can work so well together? Dave is a captain in the military and I have a minor in peace studies. When we moved in together he had 2 giant dogs, and I had two cats who had never been around dogs. We are yin and yang. When I question how it is that we work so well together he always tells me "serendipity, baby." And, he's right. It's not the only thing that keeps us going, and it's not something we rely on, but we seem to have an inordinate amount of it around us. He landed a job in the 'shwa which was halfway between where he was living in Windsor, and where I was living in Ottawa, and I landed one a couple of weeks later. When the first house we bought didn't work out, we found one we liked better a block away. Things have aways seemed to have fallen into place and worked out for us, and I can't explain how.

As the restaurant slowly turned toward the west we had another dose of serendipity. As though it hadn't been perfect to start dinner overlooking the spot where we got engaged on a cold February night, as it turned west we were timed perfectly to watch the sun set among the clouds. The sky was painted in ribbons of pinks, reds, purples yellows and oranges with the blue clouds providing the perfect contrast at every moment. In seconds the sun sank like a rock below the horizon.

The meal itself was enjoyed slowly (though Dave still eats as though someone will eat it for him if he doesn't eat it quickly enough). The appetizer course was a tomato arugula salad with lots of peccorino cheese, and some of the best olive oil I've ever tasted. I savoured every bite.

My main course was a risotto with chanterelle mushrooms and an aged goat cheese. The risotto was good but really wasn't anything to write home about. It didn't seem to matter, though, because food really didn't feel like the focus of the night, even though we were out for dinner.

As we ate, we quietly talked of the days ahead, but not the stresses that will come with them, or the work that is to be done; only of our commitment to each other and him telling me how beautiful he knows I'll look as I walk down the aisle, or how beautiful I was that night.

We looked at land marks north of the tower, saw planes just as they descended toward the airport, or just as they were rising in the sky. We talked about our excitement that soon we'll be taking off on our first real vacation alone together.

As desert (which for me was a tower of chocolate with fruit coulis and fresh fruit) was served the restaurant had turned back to the spot where we got engaged. We held hands and sipped tea, and looked below us at the baseball game. It looked as though it was a tiny mosaic with the blue seats and the crowd watching were tiny tiles.

We sipped tea again facing the water, and strolled down to the observation deck where we could hear the game, and to the glass floor. I strolled across, heels and all, while Dave watched from the solid floor, unable to overcome years of evolution which screamed "you've got to be kidding!" at him. We lingered a while holding hands, stopping to kiss in complete ignorance of people around us. He lent me his jacket when I got cold.

I had really hoped to find a comfy leather couch and bottle of wine on the observation deck where we could just curl up together and enjoy the night, but neither were available. We took the elevator back down, I joked with the operator, and we strolled back to the car, still enjoying every moment and looking at each other starry-eyed.

I still feel starry-eyed this morning. Dave's just changed my flat tire for me so I'm off to pick up my wedding dress from its final alterations, with garbage bags in tow so he doesn't see it until I'm wearing it at the top of an asile, only three days from now.

(but I have to say the feminist and jokester in me is still screaming "who knew dinner at the top of a giant phallus could be so romantic?!")


lildb said...

that was so beautiful. I'm gulping back tears.

I hope you have the perfect wedding day. (although I don't think you need luck; you've got love, boatloads of it. how wonderful.) :)


TB said...

Love this! It's so descriptive I could picture it and the emotion is utterly beautiful. Your wedding is going to be incredible, straps or no strps. Two days to go!

Heather said...

lildb: thanks for the well wishes! We're just hoping the rain holds off!

TB: thanks! I think it'll be strapless becuase the new straps they made look ass-tacular.

something blue said...

Your date sounds incredibly magical.

A funny thing about that night, my three year old cried out "Mommy there's a spaceship!" I looked out the window to find her mesmerized by the CN Tower.

Heather said...

Something blue: Well, the date was outta this world, so your little one was kinda right, no?