Saturday, March 19, 2011

Date Night

Anyone with kids will tell you that it becomes infinitely harder to go out alone as a couple. I know there are couples who make date night a sacred, scheduled part of their lives. Hats off to them because it isn't easy. I think most of us, however, struggle with it. It is not that we don't recognize the importance, it is just that there are so many factors that have to be considered, it can be overwhelming.

Who is going to take care of the kids is the biggest obstacle. We thought that would be a little easier to arrange here, but that hasn't necessarily been the case. In the almost 5 months (ah!) that we have been here, we have been out alone exactly thrice... for birthday celebrations, on days that my FIL happened to be home (which is rare). It is not just a matter of who stays with the kids, it has a lot to do with what time-frame it involves, what the "baby-sitter" will be expected to do (bedtime, meals, diapers) because those details help determine who you can choose to baby-sit.

There are economic factors too. If a family member isn't an option as a baby-sitter, you have to pay one. Which means you have to consider all of the above, plus adding babysitter fees to the cost of the evening out. And really, are you going to look for the cheapest babysitter to take care of your offspring?

There is also the fact that no matter what you do on your night out, no matter how late you come home, you get up at dawn with the kids anyway. (ok, at this point it isn't dawn anymore, but it feels pretty early after a night out.)

This week, I planned a night out with the hubs. I called an aunt that the kids adore. She and her daughter agreed to take them for the night (they slept over). I told my husband what to wear and what we needed to bring. But the rest was a secret.

So last night this is what I surprised him with:

We got on horses at dusk and rode up into the foothills of the Andes.

As it got darker, we saw the (almost) full moon rising above the mountains. When we got to our destination, a little over an hour later, there was a fire waiting for us and a breathtaking view.

Our guide and her Huaso (Chilean cowboy) helpers grilled some sausages and veggies, opened a bottle of pisco sour (what I call the Chilean version of a margarita) and some wine. We sat around the fire, enjoying the view, the sky, the fire, the silence of the mountains. My hubs loved it (he loves fire & mountains) and it was the first time he rode a horse.

It was seriously beautiful! I would do it again in a heartbeat. My only regret is that they started getting us settled on the horses and I didn't have a chance to get out my camera, and once on horseback I didn't dare try to get it out, so I didn't get to capture the beginning part (when it was still light and we were riding up the mountain).

How's THAT for a date night?

Plus, since the kids spent the night at their tia's house, we both got to sleep in until 10:30 (a luxury).

Now, Hubs has to organize the next one (though the bar is set pretty high).


mosey said...

I won't be showing English hubby this, since you have set the bar FAR too high.

But wow. Nice date night!!!! (I'd date you) Sounds perfect.

Margaret said...

I love it!! And I want the DATOS!! I've been wanting to do something like this for ages!
Glad you had fun and can't wait to see what the hubs comes up with next time!

Annje said...

@Mosey: when you come visit I'll take you on a date here ;-)

@Peg: the guide is a chilespouse from Switzerland-there was an email. I actually thought about emailing you to see if you had considered going, because I thought it would be fun to go with friends. She does them in the summer, but said she might be able to do one next month. I'll let you knowif I hear anything... if not, definitely next summer (and I'd def go again)

Denise | Chez Danisse said...

Such a great surprise. This so blows dinner & a movie out of the water. Well done!

Anonymous said...

I want to date you!! Haha, this sounds like so much fun.

Margaret said...

Annje- funny because the very night you were up there, we were talking with friends about doing something like this! Our friend wants to do the week-long trip across the Andes to Argentina and I remembered that there are "starter trips" like this one that sound absolutely wonderful!

Kyle said...

I've seen that trip go out in emails in Chilespouses and have wanted to do it! What a fantastic date night!

Also this, "And really, are you going to look for the cheapest babysitter to take care of your offspring? "

I've always wondered about that...

South America ME said...

What a great thing to do as a "date".
Having a 5 & 3-year-old, we know what you mean about finding someone reliable (trustworthy) to look after the kids. Basically for us, if the Suegra can't do it, we don't go.
Rob W.

Eileen said...

this is fabulous! sounds lovely! was there other gente there or was it just you guys and your guides?

I want to go!

Elisabeth said...

Hi Annje. I'm new to your blog, from Australia. What an exotic rendezvous for the two of you. I am impressed.

Phoenix said...

Damn, this sounds amazing, Annje! What a thoughtful and loving thing to do (and yes, you totally put the ball into your husband's court with the next date.) How awesome. The pictures are beautiful and I'm totally jealous :)

Maggie May said...

That is incredibly romantic. I'm in awe! And you, lady, are GORGEOUS. Lucky husband.

Dee said...

What a date night! Do you have any ideas for a similar date night in August, in stgo or pisco region in the north? You date guru you! I'll take any and all suggestions!