Dinner Out


Jim could not remember the last time he got so dressed up or went to such a nice place for dinner for anyone besides clients. He had his best suit on. These reservations were made two months ago.


Sarah was also wondering when the last time she put on the kind of dress she was currently wearing. How many anniversaries ago was it? Five? Seven? She wondered where they were going. The last two months had been rather smooth comparatively. Jim hadn't been nearly as stressed out as he had been. He was more engaged with the kids and less distant or distracted by work or whatever else he would do off in his study.


She liked the change but apprehension still skulked around in her mind.


"Here we are," Jim announced cheerfully.


"Wow! When did you plan this? Can we even afford this place?" Sarah's questions came as a mixture of surprise, excitement, and dutiful skepticism. After all, it wasn't very long ago that they would fight over whether or not they could all just go to McDonald's!


Jim simply answered, with a knowing smile, "yes, beautiful, we absolutely can."


When was the last time we fought about money? Or for that matter, when did I last look at the budget? Sarah's thoughts were sudden, as sudden as the realization of how things had changed over the last several months.


As Jim opened the door, the couple waded into the atmosphere thick with pleasant and mouthwatering aromas. Steaks beautifully seared had their delicious scent wafted toward the couple as fluid dynamics dictated when they opened the door. Wine glasses dinged together in toasts. Conversations melded together to created a pleasant din and allowed the couple an odd form of privacy at their table.


Jim pulled his wife's chair back for her. Just as he had opened the door for her when they go into the car, out of the car, and came into the restaurant. One of his objectives tonight was to be the gentleman he was when he was courting this woman, Sarah.


Poring over the menu, Sarah could not help but notice the prices. Old habit. Each entrée increased in price as she moved through the menu. Her first choice ended up being an appetizer because it was the only thing that seemed to cost less than a meal for three somewhere else. She leaned over the table closer to her husband, Jim.


"Are you sure we can afford this? Look at what this stuff costs!" Speaking softly and covering her face with the menu in case any of the other patrons could read lips.


"I know it's expensive. This is a gift to you. Not just dinner, but I have something else to show you tonight." Jim produced his phone from his jacket pocket. After quickly unlocking it he opened up the budget application and navigated to what he had planned for tonight.


"This is the budget for tonight," he stated confidently as he showed her.


"Oh!" Sarah's surprise squeaked out. "Really?!"


"Yes, really."


Sarah returned to the menu to find something she really wanted instead of what only she thought they could afford.