Adventures of a father and a photographer. Tales about the mystery and excitement of family travel.

tiistai 17. lokakuuta 2017

Romantic Dinner Gone Bad

Imagine a romantic dinner table in a cozy restaurant in Disneyland Paris. The candles are lit and there's subtle music in the air. The light is dim and you're looking at your beautiful spouse right in the eyes. You are holding hands over the table and silently thinking back of all the wonderful years you have spent together. Paris, candlelight, your love, it can't get much more romantic than that.

Me and my wife decided to visit Disneyland Paris for the first time when our kids were three and one years old. We thought it would be a wonderful experience for the kids although they were a bit young.

Everything went as planned and we ended up living at the Sequoia Lodge hotel by the park. The kids were very excited. They saw all these wonderful characters at the hotel and had the time of their life.

We had heard that the restaurant at the hotel was excellent and decided to have a dinner there. I got to the reception and reserved us a table. But, when the evening came, the kids were already tired. They had been all around the parks all day. A dinner at seven o'clock in the evening was a bit late for them.

Call me a bad parent, but we decided to go to the dinner anyway. My excuse is that we had been parents only for a short while. Today I would know better. You don't go to a dinner in a fancy restaurant when the kids are tired and it's almost their bedtime.

The restaurant was just as beautiful as described. There were candles on the tables and romantic music flowed from the speakers. We noticed an elderly couple sitting at a table looking at each other like teenagers on their first date. We got the table right next to them.

So, there we sat in the table waiting for the waiter. Our kids told us very loudly that it's taking too long and they don't want to sit there anymore. They decided to run around in the restaurant instead. After quite a many running competitions, the waiter finally came. We ordered the food and the dessert buffet. Another bright idea!

At this point the romantic mood in the next table was cracking a bit. The couple wasn't holding their hands anymore. They looked like they were concentrating on their meals as efficiently as they could.

When the kids heard there would be a dessert buffet they wouldn't touch their food. All we could hear was: I'm finished already, can I go and get the dessert now, please? We finally gave up and let the kids to have their ice cream and cakes.

Ok, when kids under four get to decide what they want to have for dessert, they actually can't decide. They'll have it all. The kids had massive mountains of goodies on their plates and their faces were filled with joy. Next, they decided to make a world record time of stuffing sweets in their mouths.

Little children behaving like wild men next to your table might not exactly be what you had in mind when talking about romantic dinners. The elderly couple in the next table seemed to be desperately looking for a waiter.

Another interesting fact you probably didn't know if you're a new parent: if a kid eats a pile of dessert in a very short time, the food will be vomited on the plate when you least expect it. That's what happened to us, too. All of a sudden, the younger one sat on her chair totally covered by vomit.

At this point I noticed two things. First, my wife grabbed both of the kids in her armpits and headed to our hotel room leaving me a comment about this beautiful dinner and instructions to handle with the payment. Second, the elderly couple had got their check and were leaving almost as quickly as my wife and the kids.

When everything had calmed down I sat at the table with a plate full of dessert leftovers. Suddenly, a waiter appeared and asked if the kids would like to have some coloring pens and an activity book. I took a slow look at him and then the messy table and told him that he was a bit late.


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