Saturday, October 15, 2011

the $5.57 date

Bill and I have this idea to take turns surprising each other with little dates. So yesterday morning, spontaneous me said, "ok, get ready for our lunch date, and don't dress up!"

So off we go, Ellie too. First stop: Wendy's drive-through. They have a pretty good chicken sandwich for $1.69. Two of those and a large chili, please. Total: $5.57.

Next stop: Mingo Park, a city park where we spent hours and hours and HOURS with our little soccer and baseball players back in the day. Mingo is undergoing a huge renovation. New fields, more parking, improved bike trail. So we took our lunch and our pooch and checked out the Mingo re-do ... and reminisced a bit.

I spotted the water fountain where Grandma Haller got creamed by a careless hoodlum running from his friends. The benches where we sat when Mark pitched the winning game for his championship Mustang team. The diamond where David worked as an umpire, learning to stand his ground with over-zealous coaches. The soccer fields where Dan and Katie first played what we called "magnet ball."

Trips to the concession stand. Bored siblings begging to run to the playground. "Hey, batta, batta, batta!" from the outfield. The crack of a baseball against a bat.

Though the sounds of game nights echo in my mind, now it's not my children racing across Mingo, just the wind whipping over an empty park.

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