Erica Lucke Dean

"Making the world a better place, one book at a time."

Valentine’s Day (observed)

I got flowers today.  Orchids.  Everyone knows I love orchids. Unfortunately, these orchids were dead.  There is something very tragic about receiving dead flowers.  Of course, they weren’t supposed to be dead—who sends dead flowers?  (Outside of the Godfather or something?) No, they were supposed to be alive, and they were supposed to have been delivered on Friday—for Valentine’s Day.  Friday was going to be my Valentine’s Day (observed).   

The problem with Valentine’s Day falling on the weekend is you can’t get flowers at work, and I knew I was getting flowers at work.  How did I know?  Because my husband is very well versed in how women’s minds work.  He knows that we want our flowers to be delivered where there are the most possible witnesses.  If a woman gets flowers at home when no one is around to see them, did she really get flowers at all?  So the flowers were coming to the office.  How did I know I was getting flowers at all?   Easy, I saw the charge in my husband bank account.  It was an accident—I wasn’t snooping—I was just checking on something.  We have to check on things sometimes, don’t we?  And sometimes while checking on something in a completely innocent fashion, we find something we weren’t meant to find.  It’s sort of like that time I found all those wrapped packages under my mother’s bed when I was in first grade and I had to unwrap them…very carefully…to see what they could possibly be!  It was just an accident!  So, I accidently found out about the flowers I wasn’t supposed to know about, and throughout the day, I was desperate to call my husband to alert him that they had not arrived, but I couldn’t—they were a secret!  A secret that I could not let on that I knew about.  Are you anywhere near as confused as I am by that convoluted logic?  Good!

The snow started falling around one o’clock in the afternoon, and it was quickly becoming obvious that this was not just a mild case of the flurries.  The weather was rapidly adding to my anxiety about the flowers, because I knew there was a good chance that we would be closing early so we could all rush out to buy bread, milk, and toilet paper in case we were snowed in for days on end.   My anxiety was compounded by the fact that the flower delivery guy had already been to the bank several hours earlier and despite my thorough interrogation, he had no knowledge of any flowers being addressed to me.  So, by the time the bank closed at four, I was more than just a little bit disappointed. 

I was distracted for the next hour while I foolishly drove my daughter to her friend’s house in a blizzard.  Hey I’m Yankee girl living in a sweet tea and grits world…I wasn’t afraid of a little snow! 

It was very scary snow!  They don’t have plows and salt trucks down here!  It’s like going commando with your car.  The worst part is realizing that the person driving beside you had probably never seen that much slush outside of a margarita glass! 

I made it home safely only to be greeted by my husband at the door.  He looked at me expectantly, waiting for my response to the undelivered flowers, and I had to play dumb.  I wasn’t supposed to know about them, remember?

“Well…?” He started.  I tried to look innocent.  “It’s snowing!”  I said.  “Did you get anything special at the bank today?” He pressed.  “No.”  I said with feigned confusion.  “Was I supposed to?”  His face fell.  His disappointment was almost as severe as mine.  “I sent you flowers!” 

Now we were both bummed out.  What do you do on Valentine’s Day (observed) when you’re totally bummed out and there is a blizzard raging outside? 

We strapped into the Honda and held our breath as it slid down the length of the driveway to settle gently on the street below.  The best part of going out to dinner in a blizzard is there was absolutely no waiting for a table!  I found it amazing how many restaurants were actually open that night.  Every other store in the area, including Wal-Mart, had closed early.  We had a nice dinner and braved the icy, slushy roads back home.  We put the missing flowers out of our minds while we enjoyed the extra long weekend.  Monday was President’s Day (observed). 

It was a back to work day today, and amazingly my flowers arrived before two.  As I said before, they were very dead.  The UPS people decided to put my tropical orchids in the freezer over the weekend to keep them nice and fresh!  I called the flower company myself to make them aware of the “little problem” with the orchids.  I’ll be getting new flowers tomorrow—at the bank, where there will be the absolute most possible witnesses.  It doesn’t really matter what the calendar says.  I’ve decided that tomorrow will be my official Valentine’s Day this year, because Valentine’s Day can be any day when your sweetheart sends you flowers. 

Until the next time…I’ll be picking a better day for Mother’s Day (observed)

Copyright © 2000-2016, Erica Lucke Dean. All rights reserved. Any retranscription or reproduction is prohibited and illegal.