Friday, January 6, 2012

It's not surprising, but I hate surprises

For eighteen years of marriage I have bought my own gifts. I'm not terribly big with unknown because frankly I'm an ungrateful wretch. I have only learned how to accept gifts in the last year. It's hard for me to say thank you. It's hard for me to appreciate what others do for me because, well, I'm not very good at acting surprised. I'm not that person who wears the ugly shirt because it was a gift. It wasn't until a dear friend of mine accepted a gift from me with wise words that I realized the art of gift-RECEIVING. Her response was a prayer that my life would be enriched double what I had given to her. And whatever bands holding my heart three sizes too small burst and I "got it." Receiving gifts is about the giver too. It's not about me. It's about the joy they have in giving something to me.

My husband is also a horrible gift receiver who hates surprises. So the fact that for 6 months I planned an elaborate vacation (organizing time off from his work and coaching responsibilities) came as quite a shock to those who knew us well. In October I planned a quickie vacation. We left Monday night, played golf on Tuesday, had lunch at In and Out, and dinner at Ruth's Chris and came back on Wednesday. The dinner was a shift because the day was foggy and dinner was late and the ocean view I had wanted to have at George's Ocean Terrace was a no go, so to Craig's happiness (he hates California kooky cuisine) we went to Ruth's Chris. Which for the record has a different menu in California. Much kookier.

Through a series of delayed flights and almost missed (seriously running through the SLC airport shoving little old ladies aside and Craig calling out just leave me, I'll meet you there!) planes, we arrived in San Diego late, late, late at night. Their car options were limited so we were asked if we wanted an a Challenger. Why yes, yes we would!


Then we checked in to our hotel room at Estancia La Jolla. This hotel is beautiful but strange. See how the buildings are all connected? We had to follow a series of hallways and doorways that made us feel like we were in the Shining. But thankfully the beds were comfy so we were all ready for golf in the morning.


The whole purpose of the trip was to play at this course. It was Craig's dream course Torrey Pines. This is the place where Scott Peterson was picked up in the parking lot with a trunk full of cash, camping equipment, cell phones, viagra and shovel (the extent of my useless knowledge knows no bounds!)

Craig actually played very well and I shot like a 150 (over double what I should have) and it's hard to believe the months of practice and lessons paid off but they did.


I felt a sense of accomplishment for completing a course that is used for professionals. And a fantastic sense of accomplishment for creating a surprise getaway for Craig that he (and I) will never forget.

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