As the burrito was flying through the air and landing in my hair, I knew it was too soon to meet his family.
I knew I was forgetting something, but after much convincing, I decided to drive north an hour and a half through a monsoon to meet the family.
I arrived soaking wet and cursing that I took the time to straighten my hair. There they were, his sisters with their husbands and children in sombreros and felt mustaches.
It was a Mexican themed family dinner. They gave me a blonde felt mustache. His family was fun. I immediately started to make a mental to-do list of “how to be more fun” if I ever wanted to marry this guy: learn to cook and decorate, start remembering holidays and birthdays, start caring about holidays and birthdays. I mean, if this was just a family dinner, then what were holidays and birthdays like?
Dinner was ready. I piled my burrito high with sour cream, guacamole and salsa. I was thrilled to start eating. I’m good at eating. Plus, that mental to-do list needed to stop.
I got the vibe that I needed to mingle more and stop being so introverted. I left my comfort zone and my date in the kitchen and went into the living room. Everyone was there.
I sat on the couch next to my date’s 9-year-old nephew. While making small talk, I felt things were going well.
My burrito was delicious. Preparing for my next bite, I could feel my plastic fork struggle while trying to cut through all the layers. I wished I had gotten a knife.
SNAP! My fork snapped at the neck. My hand plunged downward hitting the edge of my Styrofoam plate, catapulting my burrito and extra toppings into the air. Guacamole and sour cream sprayed the kid sitting next me while the burrito landed in my hair, rolling down my new light blue shirt and landing in-between the leather couch cushions.
I was shocked and mortified.
All his sisters looked at me.
I cracked a few jokes and asked for some napkins.
One sister was nice enough to take my plate and rush me to the bathroom. She’d take care of it.
No longer in the limelight, I was fine, but I was still thinking of all the rice in the couch and that poor kid.
In the bathroom, his sister starting telling me how well I was holding my composure, for if this happened to her at her husband’s house on the first time she met his family, she would run away crying.
She left and let me clean myself up. I shut the door and the embarrassment settled in. I started to cry.
My date knocked on the door. I had to open it, salsa hair and all. He came in, giggled and gave me a hug.
“Thanks for a great birthday.”
“WHAT? It’s his birthday? No wonder there were wrapped presents, sombreros and felt mustaches. Idiot! I knew I was forgetting something!” I thought to myself.
“Sorry I forgot your present,” I muffled in between sobs.
“It’s okay, I knew you forgot it was my birthday,” he replied.
I cried harder, and my mental to-do list got longer.