It is not a secret that most parents are home on a Saturday night and while I recognized how boring my weekend evenings have become, it was not until recently that I remembered what others were doing while I was home. Typically after a long day of playing with the kids, my Saturday nights are quiet and restful. A few blocks away, there are bars and restaurants that I know are bustling, but they feel far away in distance and time. It has been awhile since I was there to see it for myself.
On a recent Saturday night, I realized that I needed to buy some milk, so I offered to N that we take a walk to the local Rite Aid before he went to bed. As we walked, we passed couples holding hands, friends feeding their parking meter, a group of girls waiting for their table at a local Italian restaurant, and a double-date inspecting a bottle of wine before handing it to the waitress. There was so much Saturday-night-in-the-city energy that it reminded me for a minute that oh yeah, this is what people do on Saturdays. Meanwhile I walked to Rite Aid wearing denim covered in baby food purees and holding my toddler’s mysteriously moist hand.
N talked me into buying some chocolate Tastykake cupcakes and we sat on the concrete steps eating them, watching the lively city around us. It was one of those warm September nights with a bit of chill when the wind blows and an earlier darkness that reminds you that Fall is coming. I sat there appreciating this moment with my son and recognizing how quickly things change: seasons, people, life. As we watched more people trotting off to start their Saturday nights, we finished our cupcakes and headed home to bed. As we walked home hand-in-hand though, I smiled, thinking about how lucky I was to have the best Saturday night date in all of Philadelphia.