Date Night Idea

Photo by Lew D'Souza
What do you do for date nights with your significant other?  I'm sure most parents notice that their alone time decreases substantially after they have a baby.  Corey and I have been lucky to have had a good sleeper from the start and Rudy is relatively good at playing on her own while I'm working on my laptop or Corey is working on the house.  We get lots of time as a couple in the evenings, after she's in bed at 7, but we still notice that we miss little things like going out on our own in the evenings.

Because Rudy has such a strict bedtime, we can't really go out for dinner or a movie because one of us needs to be home to start her routine at 6.  While we know we're spoiled with a baby who sleeps through the night, and we obviously love our time as a family of three, we've been missing going out just the two of us and so we've had my mother babysit a few times lately so that we could have a little date.

One thing I discovered about going out with Corey since Rudy was born is that it always feels really special and festive when we go out just the two of us!  To make the most of our time, we've been making an effort to plan special dinners or fun activities and I often find that I'm really excited for our night out in the days leading up to it.

With Halloween around the corner, I wanted to do something kind of scary.  I happen to be a BIG scary movie fan and we always visit some haunted houses at this time of year but I wanted to try something different this time.  We ended up booking an Escape Room with some sort of scenario revolving around being stuck in a serial killer's woodshop and having to find a way out before he returns.  Corey and I both like puzzles, and I love being scared so we thought it was a good match for our first try.

The place we booked was above a small restaurant and the reception area left something to be desired.  I don't think I went in with crazy high expectations but I was expecting a little more ambiance.  Obviously, I knew it wouldn't be frightening on the same level as the first time I watched The Shining, but I thought maybe it I'd feel a little uneasy.

Alas, if I was mildly uncomfortable, it was only because the floors hadn't been washed in ages and I wondered how many dirty hands had pawed all the clues in the escape room before us.  Yuck!  And you know who goes to escape rooms on a Friday night?  Apparently, high school kids and THIS GIRL!  I started to regret my big date night idea as we were waiting our turn.  The skeptic in me wanted to leave.  Why hadn't we just gone for dinner and drinks?  We could have dressed up!  I wouldn't need hand sanitizer!  It would have been romantic!  What were we thinking?

Then it was our turn and I have to say, the actual experience was pretty cool!  Sure, it was just a bunch of silly puzzles but I tried to get into character and immerse myself in the scenario.  I wanted to feel that sense of urgency so I pretended we were in a low-budget horror movie and you know, I really felt it!  I won't give spoilers but we were working in the dark and finding codes to open locks and the time flew by.  It may have started out as a lame date but it was a rush getting to work together on something that didn't involve home renovations or Rudy.  We were using flashlights and pooling our general knowledge and giving each other high fives when we made progress.  It was really great!  If I were a relationship therapist I would totally make couples do this.  The teamwork and cooperation really helped us bond and it gave us something fun to chat about over drinks later.

I would definitely try another escape room.  I may explore another location or a more challenging scenario next time but if they have these in your city, you should go.  Just remember to mentally play along.  It's so much better when you force yourself to get into it!

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