John an I did something this weekend that we have not done since moving to Massachusetts: we went out for dinner and drinks with people who are not related to us. Truth be told, this may be the first time we’ve actually gone out with other people since our wedding. What can I say? We’re not social people.
I had to chuckle as we were getting ready. I walked into the bedroom at one point and the bed was strewn with outfit options that John had considered and discarded. This is how my bed always looked when I was getting ready for a date with him, and as I dressed for a night on the town beside him, we laughed at ourselves for being so nervous about our double date with John’s coworker and his lady friend.
John’s coworker was raised in our fair town, so he offered to show us a little bit of local color. If you come to visit us, we now have some idea of where we might take you. We started out at Conrad’s Restaurant for dinner. On a Saturday night the wait was close to half an hour, but well worth it. The best description of the place might be to call it a family-friendly Italian steakhouse. The food was delicious, served in generous portions, and most of the entrees were well under $15. Our guide informed us that Conrad’s steak tips are an absolutely essential part of life in Norwood, so John ordered them and I sampled from his plate. The tangy sauce and perfectly cooked meat did not disappoint.
Our next stop, just around the corner, was Napper Tandy’s, the local Irish bar. It was comfortably full with people who were there for the baseball, but not crowded. The dark corners and high tables were cozily lit with candles, and the noise level was good for holding a conversation. I was very glad to find that our companions are fairly extroverted people with enough stories to tell that, in a night were food and conversation were the main event, we didn’t suffer from any awkward silences.
Our last stop was Lewis’, the “townie bar.” It is not the first place I will be eagerly bringing our visitors. We may have just hit it at the wrong time, after the dinner crowd and before the late night drinkers, but the place was eerily empty when we arrived. John’s coworker informed us that the bar’s famous drink is an OVC – Orange Juice, Vodka, and Collins mix. It’s pretty much exactly the sort of tasteless, watered-down girlie drink you would expect to find in a place frequented by bottle blonds whose shirts advertise that they are single but prefer not to remain so, which is an honest description of the crowd that was beginning to fill the bar when we left.
Good food and excellent company aside, the important thing about the evening is that John and I did not present our standard anti-social faces to the world. For the first time in two years, we made an active effort to make new friends. I think there may be hope for us yet.