Just when things start getting really grim - when it becomes abundantly clear that the mold incubator is not going to clean itself - my father calls me.
"What are you doing for lunch?" he asks.
Bless you. Nothing. Save me from this domestic torment.
"Meet me at Le Colonial."
My dad's good like that. Not only is he a spiffy dresser, but he's excellent company and likes a nice lunch.
I arrive at Le Colonial and am immediately transported to French Indochina. Arching palms, lazy ceiling fans, black-and-white photographs of colonial Vietnam everywhere. Excuse me, but where is Catherine Deneuve? I won't eat unless I am served by Catherine Deneuve!
My dad orders a gin martini. Again - bless him because it means I can have a gingery cocktail in the middle of the day and not feel guilty. Also, no one else seems put off by the whole French colonialism thing, so I just go with it. It's my day off! I am drinking in the middle of the day! French Colonialism! Yay!
When we leave, I give my dad a big hug. "Thank you for this special treat," I say, but what I really mean is thank you for taking me out of myself. I snap this picture of my dad in all his lunchtime finery. That shy, clever smile is always how I think of him. Isn't he the handsomest?
P.S. Thank you all so much for your incredibly sweet comments this week when I was feeling down. You really made me laugh. I love you guys. xox