If you’re assuming that our celebration will forever be remembered based on the day unfolding in a picturesque, movie-worthy manner – you would be severely mistaken.
To preface, you should know that I LOVE everything about Valentine’s Day. It is arguably one of my favorite holidays and celebrating the day is nonnegotiable. My appreciation for February 14th dates back to the early 90’s. My parents’ joint enthusiasm undeniably ignited my early fondness and my dad’s unfailing floral deliveries each year continue to fan the flame. Let it be known, Greggory Earl has been killing Valentine’s Day since at least 1987.
Even though the sunny skies we experienced for the past several days had been replaced by a frigid and rainy day, Valentine’s Day 2018 was off to a marvelous start. I blared Pandora’s Michael Bublé station throughout our apartment all morning; and although Jarred didn’t actually verbalize his gratitude, I have no doubt he loved the slow jams. After spending the early afternoon tutoring my little first grader, Jbabe and I ventured to the market to purchase the ingredients for the night’s menu. The abundance of adorable men at the flower stands obtaining last minute bouquets for their valentines was my favorite part of the excursion. Better late than never, gentlemen.
The night’s itinerary included a fresh seafood feast with Shawn and Kelsey and their apartment (which is conveniently about twice the size of our humble abode) in Bellevue. Everything was going swimmingly as Jarred and I climbed into his 4Runner with our market treasures nestled snuggly in an ice chest. Traffic in Seattle is constantly a nightmare, but rush hour [especially downtown] is it’s own special kind of torture. We were prepared for the 11-mile journey to take roughly forty minutes – if only we had been so lucky.
Along with what seemed like every other motorist in Washington, Jarred weaved down I-5 and cruised over both bridges on I-90 without issue as the sun set. However, as the exit for 405 North came into view Jarred’s 4Runner decided to prematurely end our journey – AKA the car literally stopped working. Praise Jesus we were at somewhat of an incline and in the left-hand exit lane as Jarred was able to coast the 4Runner into the striped, triangular area that separated the four interstate lanes from the two exit lanes. Before Wednesday I had no idea what that segment of road was called; however my Google search revealed this – gore, gore point, or gore zone is a triangular piece of land found where roads merge or split. Regardless of terminology, by the time the vehicle came to a halt we were somewhat “safe” in the gore and traffic could continue flying by without rear-ending us.
Needless to say, we were extremely baffled as we sat stranded with our hazard lights flashing attempting to diagnosis our predicament. Our initial conclusion was that we’d somehow ran out of gas despite the fact that the fuel gauge indicated 74 miles remaining. Jarred called Shawn to let him know that dinner needed to be postponed by a smidge and we also needed a teeny favor in the form of a gas can and the willingness to park his truck in the middle of an interstate.
Thankfully Shawn and Kelsey graciously agreed to come to our rescue. Things were quickly looking up until after the boys poured gas into Jarred’s tank and the car still refused to start. At this point it seemed that the battery must be the culprit. If inching Shawn’s truck into the increasingly narrow portion of the gore behind our car had been daunting, squeezing it next to us in order to jump the 4Runner was straight up terrifying – especially when it was done in vain. Given the circumstances I was surprisingly relaxed about our roadside dilemma, however when both attempts to revive our vehicle failed, I was starting to be a bit concerned. Maybe moving to Seattle with only one car wasn’t the wisest decision.
Subsequently the jumper cables were removed and Shawn and Kelsey departed on their second, but not final, errand of the day for us – purchasing a new car battery. They swiftly returned and the poor boys began switching batteries in the dark. After sitting in a frigid car for over an hour and a half I was hopeful this task would quickly get the show on the road [pun intended]. That illusion instantly vanished when they realized the new battery didn’t work with Jarred’s model of 4Runner. #winning
With our battery disconnected, Jarred and I sat in complete dark sans hazard lights as Kelsey and Shawn returned to purchase another battery. It goes with out saying that we were more than a little relieved when our knights in shining armor returned with a second battery that miraculously restored the 4Runner into a functioning automobile. In case it isn’t overwhelming apparent – we and have THE BEST brother and sister-in-law in the universe.
Praise the Lord all four Witts returned safely to Shawn and Kelsey’s apartment finally ready to devour our valentine feast. Albeit our meal was enjoyed over three hours later than originally planned, thanks to all food being in the ice chest every bite of shrimp, oysters, mussels mariniére with curry and homemade cheesecake was delicious. I’m also pleased to report that we (namely Jarred and Shawn) successfully shucked all two-dozen oysters. It’s safe to say our evening didn’t materialized as planned, but it’s an even bigger guarantee that we will never forget how we celebrated Valentine’s Day 2018.