A man worked odd jobs and saved money for months for a great dinner with his wife, but everything went wrong when she showed up...
Allan and Gracie had been married almost ten years, and their wedding anniversary was coming up soon. They had never been wealthy, but the last year was rough. The economic crisis hit them hard, and Allan lost his permanent position at an important company.
Since then, he had been working part-time gigs here and there to make ends meet. Gracie had helped as well, but it wasn’t easy for anyone in town. However, Allan was determined to take his wife somewhere special this year.
Allan prepared something special for Gracie. | Source: Shutterstock
Le Pré was the fanciest restaurant in town, and Gracie had been dreaming of eating French food for a long time. But it was so expensive that Allan had never been able to afford it, even before the crisis.
However, he took several jobs a day for the past few months to surprise her. He worked a long shift at an Amazon warehouse, a short shift at a grocery store, and sometimes delivered food to people, thanks to one of those famous apps.
He was tired all the time, but everything would be perfect for their special night. However, Gracie was worried about him. “Honey, aren’t you taking too much on? You’re working around 16 hours a day. That’s just too much,” she told him one evening.
Allan worked many jobs. | Source: Pexels
“Gracie, we need the money. Who knows how long this crisis is going to last. We need to save up for a rainy day,” he said. Allan had yet to reveal the reason why he was working that hard. Gracie worried about money constantly.
She would have told him to stop working so much if she knew the real reason, and Allan wanted to surprise her. One small dose of happiness during this crisis was the perfect gift for his wife. He was close to his goal already, and their dinner would be wonderful.
The day finally came, and Allan woke up cheerfully. “Good morning, darling. Happy anniversary!” Allan said and hugged Gracie.
Their anniversary came. | Source: Pexels
“Happy anniversary, sweetheart. Are you taking the day off?” Gracie asked.
“Not the entire day, but I’m only working one shift at the warehouse. So, I’ll be home in time for our dinner. I’m going to text you the location at the last minute because it’s a surprise,” he replied.
“Oh, Allan. I don’t know about going somewhere to eat. I can make something special right here and save some money,” she suggested.
“No. We deserve a treat today. It’s an important day after all. I love you. I’ll see you tonight,” Allan said, kissed her, and left for work. He had taken a change of clothes to look his best at dinner and couldn’t wait to get to the restaurant.
Allan dressed up in a suit and waited for Gracie at the restaurant. | Source: Pexels
That evening, he got there before Gracie and sat down at their reserved table. But he was shocked when Gracie walked in. She wore a clean but simple dress and didn't style her hair. Why didn’t she dress up a little?
“Hey, baby. I’m here,” Gracie greeted him. “I can’t believe you made a reservation here. It’s so fancy. You look great. So handsome!”
“I…I wanted to surprise you today. You’ve always wanted to come here,” Allan said, but he couldn’t hide the disappointment in his tone because Gracie had not dressed up. “What happened today? You didn’t have time to go to the hair salon?”
He was surprised to see that Gracie didn't dress up. | Source: Pexels
“I didn’t want to spend money on that. The crisis has driven all those prices up, and it’s just not worth it when I can do something simple at home,” Gracie answered, avoiding eye contact with Allan.
“Oh. But why are you wearing that dress? You have much nicer gowns at home,” he asked.
“But you didn’t give me enough time. They were all wrinkled or smelled like mothballs. This is fine. It’s simple but cute,” Gracie answered and grinned. However, Allan could tell that something was going on with her.
The waiter came by and Gracie only ordered a salad. | Source: Pexels
She should have been more excited about this date. But before he could ask, the waiter appeared. “What can I get you this evening?” he asked them.
“What do you want to eat, honey?” Allan asked Gracie.
“Hmmm. I just want the green salad. Thank you,” Gracie said and closed the menu.
“Would that be the appetizer?” the waiter wondered.
Gracie didn't want to order anything else. | Source: Pexels
“No. That’s all I want,” she told him.
“Gracie. What are you talking about? That salad is not a main dish,” Allan said.
“But I’m not that hungry today,” Gracie said. Allan couldn’t believe what was going on. He couldn’t recognize his own wife. She refused to doll up for their special dinner and didn't order anything else at the restaurant.
Allan got angry at his wife. | Source: Pexels
Why did he waste all those months working? He started to get angry but didn’t want to make a scene at the restaurant. So he ordered something simple for dinner as well, hoping to get out of there soon. Afterward, he paid for dinner, and they went outside.
“Gracie. I can’t believe your attitude today. I just worked like crazy to give you something special on our anniversary, and you couldn’t even do your hair!” Allan yelled. He wanted to discuss it calmly but couldn’t contain his emotions by the end.
“Allan, sweetheart. It’s just—”
Gracie was crying on the couch but had a surprise for Allan. | Source: Pexels
“No. I don’t want to hear your excuses now. This night is ruined. I’ll see you at home,” Allan interrupted before Gracie could say anything else and walked away. He needed to clear his head but he would regret everything he said later.
Gracie was sitting on the couch crying when he opened the door. She stood up and gave him a wrapped box. Allan was surprised, but no gift would make up for this ruined evening. “What is this, Gracie?” he asked reluctantly.
“Open it,” she said. Allan opened the box and saw a watch inside. It was the same watch they had seen during a mall visit five years earlier. It was the most expensive model in the store, and Allan could not afford it even with a steady job back then.
Gracie bought him his dream watch. | Source: Unsplash
“How did you get this, Gracie? This watch costs a fortune!” Allan exclaimed.
“I know…I couldn’t get a job in this current climate. But you have wanted that watch for years and I wanted to surprise you so I sold off a few old things. I even borrowed some money from my sister too. I just wanted to see you happy,” Gracie said through tears.
“No, Gracie. I…I’m so sorry for yelling at you tonight,” he started. “You sold your fancy dresses to buy this watch, right?”
“Yes. You have been working too much lately, and I wanted to do something special for our anniversary. I didn’t have any money left for the hair salon. And I only finished scraping the money today. There just wasn’t enough time,” Gracie continued. “I’m sorry. I ruined our evening too.”
She explained her side of the story. | Source: Pexels
“But why didn’t you eat at the restaurant?” Allan asked.
“Allan, that menu was so overpriced. I couldn’t let you spend so much money. You have been saving for a rainy day,” she answered.
“I was only saving to give you something special,” he told her. Gracie’s mouth dropped.
They reconciled and learned a big lesson. | Source: Pexels
“Oh. I guess we were both being silly,” she finally uttered and laughed a little. Allan laughed too. They both had done everything to make tonight special and didn’t know it. But they learned not to place so much value on material things or fancy dinners ever again.
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