18 years…

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Today marks my 18th anniversary. (In my tradition of anthropomorphizing my marriage, it’s allowed to vote! And is about to head off to college… It’s a little mind-blowing.) This year, the boy was planning some big surprise celebration. I both love and hate surprises. I worry about being disappointed, but still having to fake enthusiasm because the other person went to so much trouble. I have issues. I do love the thoughtfulness factor, so I was very touched that he was taking the initiative and planning something.

All I knew was that it was an overnight expedition and to dress up. So, I went and got a pedicure while he dropped the dogs off at their boarding place, then we packed a bag and checked into our first stop on the Surprise Anniversary Tour – The Hotel Max:

18yr_HotelMaxInside was much too hip for the likes of us:

18yr_MaxLobbyOur room was tiny, but very nicely designed. I’m standing in the opposite corner of the room to take this photo:

18yr_MaxRoomWe dropped our bags and headed off to the second stop on the Surprise Anniversary Tour – Smash Putt:

18yr_SmashPutt

Smash Putt is part mini-golf, part art installation. There were all of these really cool contraptions, such as the “Scratch & Sniff” hole:

18yr_SmashPutt3

Or the “Skeebawl”…

18yr_SmashPutt4

We did the loop-de-loop one a couple of times:

18yr_SmashPutt5

This one was brutal:

18yr_SmashPutt7

I loved the “Homage to Frogger” one (Not it’s real name… )

18yr_SmashPutt6

Of course there was a bar:

18yr_SmashPuttBar

And it was pretty close, but I managed the victory:

18yr_SmashPuttCards

I particularly loved the pencils:

18yr_SmashPuttPencilsThen we had a little relaxing time, which we spent being extra-classy:

18yr_Classy

Then it was time to get all gussied up…

18yr_FancyUs

and go to the third and final stop on the Surprise Anniversary Tour – Canlis! For those not from Seattle, Canlis is a venerable restaurant that’s been around since 1950. Unlike most restaurants of that age, it provides modern cuisine while retaining old-school ambience and excellent service. I’ve wanted to go for a while, since I’ve heard nothing but great things, so I was pretty excited.

The whole restaurant looks out over Lake Union. We were seated in a lovely banquette, with this view (I waited until the table in front of us was cleared, since that seemed awkward… )

18yr_Canlis

We started our evening off with these extraordinary cocktails. I can’t remember the name of mine, but it was AMAZING.

18yr_CanlisCocktails
We ordered the tasting menu, which was a modern take on some of their classic dishes. While I’d like to do a WD-50 style write up of each and every course, I’m going to refrain. (For reasons that will become clear later on… #foreshadowing)

But I will start with a little description of their first course, the pupu platter. Here’s a before and after:

18yr_CanlisBeforeAfter

You basically cooked the meat on that round stone, there was teriyaki sauce in the little capsule that you added and you sprinkled it with the micro greens. It was both fun and delicious. Here’s a snapshot of the other dishes we enjoyed (the blank square is the Waygu beef that I forgot to photograph. Oops!) As you can see, very modern presentation and everything was so delicious:

18yr_CanlisMenu

We’d also brought a really nice bottle of wine that we’d bought when we were visiting the Cyclones in Napa:

18yr_Wine

I don’t know if the good stuff is stronger than it’s 7-dollar counterparts, but the wine hit me like a sledgehammer toward the latter half of the meal. To the point where I don’t really remember some of the later courses as much as I’d like, (I still got pictures of them though. Such a committed blogger… ) and I ended up getting sick in the car on the ride home. So, poor T’s night ended in a decidedly less romantic fashion than he’d probably been hoping for. 😦

It was such a bummer. And a bit of a mystery, since I have a pretty good idea of what my tolerance is like. I’ve gone out and had an equivalent amount of wine and cocktails, maybe a glass or two less wine, and been able to drive home. Heck, WD-50 we had a similar amount of alcohol and navigated the subway back to our hotel. But the boy was a good sport about it and I suppose it’s a more accurate way to celebrate marriage: the good, the bad and the ugly!

Happy Anniversary, T. I am so very grateful to have you in my life, for all of the reasons!

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