By Kathy Miele
Alex had graduated from college and it was time to celebrate! Family had come in from across the country and we needed to make reservations for dinner.
“Where do you want to go?” I asked Steven.
“Let’s ask Alex where he wants to go?” Steven said as Alex walked into the room.
“Go where?” Alex asked as he headed for the refrigerator for some breakfast.
“We’re going out to dinner tonight to celebrate your graduation,” I said. “Any favorite restaurant that you’d like to go to?”
Alex thought for a minute. “Nope, can’t think of one. You guys can pick.” He was back to his search for something to eat.
“Do you want to go somewhere by the water?” Steven asked.
“Doesn’t matter to me,” Alex answered as he pulled a box of cereal out of the cabinet.
“How about that great place by the river,” I said as I looked over at Alex. “Do you still fit in your dress pants?”
“Dress pants?” That seemed to catch his attention. “I’d rather go someplace where I can wear a pair of jeans.”
“OK, so you do care where we go,” I said as I handed him a bowl for his cereal. “Somewhere casual?”
“I guess.” He began to pour his cereal. “It really doesn’t matter.”
“But you just said it did matter!”
“I don’t care what restaurant it is,” he corrected me. “I just don’t want to dress up.”
“OK, so jeans it is.” I thought for a minute. “How about that place that has the balcony that overlooks the ocean.”
Steven was getting the milk out of the refrigerator for Alex. “That’s a good one,” he said. “That’s jeans and a button-down dress shirt.”
Alex looked up from pouring his milk. “Dress shirt?”
“Are you kidding!” I cried. “You don’t want to wear a nice shirt either?”
“I’d rather just wear jeans and a T-shirt,” he said. “I just don’t feel like dressing up.”
“This is supposed to be a celebration dinner and it sounds like you want to go to the ball pit at McDonald’s!” I cried.
Alex looked up from his bowl of cereal, a big smile on his face. “I haven’t thought of that place in years!” He looked over at Steven. “Remember how much fun Max and I had in that place?”
Which, of course, lead to a 15-minute conversation on every kid party place that we had ever been to.
After discussing the pluses and minuses of the bowling party vs. the roller skating parties, I decided we needed to get back to our original conversation.
“So I’m asking again,” I said. “Any suggestions of where we go for dinner tonight?”
Alex put his empty bowl in the sink. “Makes no difference to me,” he said.
Steven looked at me. “I’m fine with whatever you decide.”
“All right,” I said. “I’ll make the reservation for 7.”
“Great!” Alex said as he walked back to his room.
Steven looked at me. “Where are you making the reservation?”
“I have no idea,” I sighed. “Give me a few minutes because right now the only place that keeps popping up in my head is the ball pit!”