There is more to this story. It includes pre-dinner temper tantrums and other Herculean parental challenges, but here is what you need to know:
A waiter spilled a glass of wine on Clara, our four year old daughter. She was drenched in red wine. She was not happy in a very four year old way.
My wife picked up Clara and exited the restaurant, leaving our baby with her dinner companion and his two small children.
She brought our daughter to the car to clean her up. She determined that Clara’s shirt was not salvageable. She offered Clara one of her brother’s shirts, which happened to be in the car. It would be tight, but it might work.
She offered the shirt off her own back.
She offered to reverse the unsalvageable shirt as a temporary solution.
As any parent will tell you, forcing either one of these shirts onto a raging four year old would’ve been impossible.
My wife needed a shirt of some kind for my daughter so that they could, at minimum, reenter the restaurant to reclaim our baby and return home.
With no other options, Elysha walked over to the nearest house. She knocked on the door. A man and a woman answered.
Elysha explained the situation and asked the couple if she could borrow a tee shirt for the evening.
Take a moment and let that sink in. In need of a shirt for my daughter to wear so that she could reenter a restaurant and reclaim our baby, my wife walked to a nearby house, knocked on a stranger’s door and requested a tee shirt.
The couple gave her a white tee shirt and sent her on her way.
Clara ultimately refused to wear the newly acquired shirt. Instead, she chose to turn her wine-strained shirt around and wear that instead.
Elysha and Clara reentered the restaurant, calmed our now-screaming baby, and completed the meal, which ended up costing them nothing.
Do you know any other person on the planet who would attempt such a thing?
I didn't think so, then it occurred to me that Elysha’s solution was remarkably similar (albeit more ethical and decidedly less criminal) to something I did when I was nineteen years old and in desperate need of gas money in New Hampshire.
Nearly identical, in fact.
I’ve always thought that Elysha and I were cut from the same cloth. I was just cut from the raggedy, soiled edges of the cloth and she was carefully cu from the pristine middle.