Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Some of My Best Friends Are Masterminds

You see, I headed to Illinois this past weekend to celebrate my birthday with friends and had a little surprise. I left for my dad's on Friday morning, where I later met up with Kirsten and Travis. We were supposed to catch the Aurora showing of 'Night of the Living Dead: The Musical,' but traffic and other factors interfered. Instead, we went out to grab some food and drinks, and spent the rest of the evening talking. Afterward, they dropped me off, and I made plans to meet up, again, with Kirsten on Saturday. I hopped onto 55, and we hit the Orland Park mall, where we tried on a few dresses. I found one that was perfect for our Drama Awards ceremony, but knew I'd be dropping another dress size, so it would no longer fit. Next, we made a "quick" visit to the Clinique counter that ended up lasting an hour and a half (we both got makeovers). We wandered around for a bit longer, before returning to Kirsten's. The next hour was spent frantically getting ready, before grabbing our trusty Google maps directions for our destination: Al Capone's Steakhouse and Hideaway. Travis asked me earlier in the week to push back the reservations from 6:00 to 7:30 for a class he was teaching, and I was more than happy to oblige - it gave us more time to get ready! What we didn't realize was that the clock we were watching was actually an hour behind, so we had to really scramble to get ourselves out of the door, to the gas station, and on the road. Surprisingly, it was only 40 miles from 'The Hills' to StC, so we were there in no time at all. Unfortunately, though, Google decided to leave out an essential street from our directions, which delayed us. But, after a quick phone call to the restaurant, we were able to figure out where we needed to go. By the time we arrived, the parking was absolute madness, so Kirsten had to create a spot just down the road. Once inside, Travis met us at the bar and almost immediately instructed me to head toward the end of it. "Someone at the end of the bar wants to buy you a drink," he said. Puzzled (and a little fearful), I made my way down to the end of the bar to take a closer look at the man in the pinstriped suit and Capone hat. I didn't recognize him at first, but then it dawned on me: it was Mike! He flew all the way from LA to spend my birthday dinner with me! Not only did he manage to surprise me, but he conspired with Kirsten and Travis! I was with them Friday and Saturday, and neither of them said a thing! (By the way, Travis needed to move the dinner date NOT because he had a class to teach, but he was picking Mike up from the airport. Sneaksy and tricksy!) Anyway, if Mike had not already been sitting up against the wall, I would have knocked him off his barstool and onto the floor. As it was, I scared the hell out of a nearby man when I shrieked, "Oh my God!" just before I tore across the bar. It was definitely unexpected and it made my birthday weekend complete. We spent the rest of the weekend together, until I inevitably (and reluctantly) had to take him back to the airport. Even though I'll see him in a couple of months, it was still hard to say goodbye, again. It seems like we're always saying goodbye - then hello - then goodbye. It's a series of smiles and agony, until I move down there permanently.

In the meantime, I'll continue being thankful for the caring and loving people in my life, while I plot different ways of getting back at them for being the only successful group to ever surprise me this way...


At 4:20 PM , Blogger Cycle Ninja said...

I hope you bought that poor guy a drink after scaring him into spilling the one he had...



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