Friday, January 20, 2017

Daddy Daughter Dance 2017

This weekend I flew to Fort Wayne, IN to surprise my daughter Ellie for her School Daddy-Daughter Dance.  Weeks ago she had told me over text she had something to ask me but then she never worked up the courage to actually do it, probably thinking I wouldn’t be able to come.  Unbeknownst her, Nicolette and I had been planning my visit for a few weeks and she had no idea.  Read on…

I arrived in Fort Wayne at around 7:30 pm after being delayed in Chicago because of something spilled on a seat (really!!??).  Nicolette had left her HHR at the airport for me to use for the weekend and I was to meet them at their Wednesday “small group” (bible study) at her friend Jane and Denny’s.  We had been fighting over text the day before I was surprised to see a nice note of instructions and big bag of swedish fish for me in the car.  And despite how much I dislike the look of that model I was surprised by how comfortable it was and how well it drove.  I was starving and the fish helped my hunger and cheered me up as well.

I arrived at Jane and Denny’s around 7:45pm and Nicolette recorded Ellie’s shocked reaction when I walked in.  It was adorable!  She had no idea and it took her a while to actually believe I was really there!  They offered me a big plate of spaghetti as well as some apple crisp to take back with me to Scott’s place where I would be crashing for the weekend as there was no room for me at Nicolette’s parents where they had been living for over a year (part of why we argued the day before).  They were all super nice people and I thanked them for their hospitality after my long flight.  When we got to Scott’s Nicolette stayed to curl Ellie’s hair before they both took off for home as she had school the next day.  

On Friday I hung around the house working on my photography and occasionally watching the inauguration of the worst person to ever serve as President of the United States.  I still was in utter shock that it was a reality, but when Scott came home to watch with me I realized that there were a lot of people in middle America who actually supported him despite his tweets, his narcissism, racism, sexism, stupidity, and lack of any leadership qualities.  At least I got Scott to agree that he should stop tweeting. :) Scott was an extremely nice guy and very hospitable so I kept my mouth shut when he proclaimed he was “completely against the gay agenda” instead of desperately wanting to ask him what he meant by “agenda”.

Around 3pm I headed out to pick up a corsage for Ellie and to pick her up from school.  We headed back to Scott’s to get dressed up and Nicolette stopped by with more clothes and to take photos of us before we headed out.  Ellie looked adorable with her white shawl and tiara on.  I wore my wedding outfit, new kicks and Ellie picked out a purple tie for me out a bunch I brought with me.  We hung out for a little bit with Ellie playing her new keyboard for me before heading out to Panda Express (her choice) for dinner before the dance.

Ellie got quite a few looks and a bunch of nice comments while at Panda Express for how formal we looked.  At dinner I explained to Ellie how cool it was to be a little fashionably late to events.   Just as I had explained to her, when we arrived at her school about 30 minutes late all of her friends rushed up to her gushing all over her about how great she looked and how happy they were to see her.  She glowed but told all of them that instead of dancing with them throughout the night she wanted to dance with me.  

This had been my fear in coming to the dance because I AM NOT A DANCER.  But, to my surprise I was very relaxed and just decided not to care because I would probably never see any of these adults ever again.  So while the rest of the fathers stood against the gym walls watching their girls dance I let loose and had a great time with Ellie dancing up a storm teaching each other various dance moves and laughing the whole time.  The music was all geared towards her age group and only a few times did she run to the bleachers with her friends to all sing the lyrics together!  

There was a professional photographer on site taking photos of all the daddy-daughter combos and downstairs there was soda and cookies which Ellie piled up on a plate for herself before I had to tell her to take it easy on the sugar.  Like father like daughter I guess.  Ellie told me that she had a crush on a boy named Chyim and his father was at the dance with his sisters.  She made sure that I didn’t mention that to anyone… hehe.  I got to meet a bunch of Ellie’s friends including Allison and Charis .  Ellie even gave me a tour of her school before we left the dance.  It was a great night and Ellie told me that I was a really good dancer which gave me a chuckle.  

Ellie and I had pretty chill day on Saturday flying my drone behind Scott’s neighborhood and even letting her fly it a little.  We wandered downtown, almost got wrapped into a pro life march, and then headed to the arboretum for a bit and stopped in at Fort Wayne’s Famous Coney Island for a hot dog and bowl of chile.  It was basically like a “dirt dog” from back home where I grew up.  We then went to a shopping center to walk around where we spent a good long time sitting in massage chairs at Bath and Beyond as well as stopping by Borders Books to browse a little.  

We headed back to the Nicolette’s where we met up with her to head to dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings.  We had a great talk there and think really sorted some things out between us.  Ellie also had some funny points to make about how stupid Trump is despite her mom voting for him and being in love with Mike Pence.  Hehe.  From there Ellie and I headed back to Scott’s where we continue our movie marathon of Harry Potter movies we had started the night before after the dance.  

On Sunday Ellie and I grabbed a big breakfast at a nearby diner and headed to church which pleased her very much.  She ran around the pews introducing me to everyone before the service started.  I found it hilarious that the songs during the service included chorus lines like “tear down the walls” when I’m pretty sure most of the people in attendance were Trump voters.  The new pastor was a young guy who I really liked.  He had a great message about supporting each other and not living a life of vanity which again, is completely opposite to Trumps Narcissistic manner.  After the service I actually grabbed his email with the intention of writing him but I never did.  But, it was the closest I’ve ever felt to being intrigued by religion….

That afternoon we hung out at their house flying the drone and playing with her neighbor Zane on his trampoline.  Ellie buried me in her stuffed animals in her room and showed me her secret stash of candy in her guitar.  It was sad to say goodbye as it always is and I told her I would do my best to make it back to her dance next year but couldn’t promise anything.  The flights home were uneventful and it was good to crawl into bed with Emily and Leo after such a great weekend with my wonderful daughter.

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