I don’t think I’m extremely romantic, but I do like to treat Raquel to some surprises every now and then, however an anniversary is a completely different kettle of fish. I really I wanted to do something special and memorable for our first anniversary.
So instead of just organizing a dinner on the anniversary night, I decided to plan a weekend in break in Cape Town, something we both had wanted to do for a while now. Some sightseeing and pampering sounded like a good idea to me… little did I know what surprised awaited us in Cape Town.
It all started on the night we arrived at the hotel. The person at reception upon seeing our names asked us what time we wanted to have dinner the next day… It was slightly confusing as I had made no reservations and was almost certain dinner was not included in our rate. I just assumed they made a mistake and the next day everything would be sorted out.
When I spoke to reception the next day to clarify the issue, they simply said that dinner was included in our package. Once again, I found it odd as I not once mentioned it was our anniversary until checking in, but I assumed that maybe this was such a nice hotel that if they knew you were celebrating something special they offer you dinner.
That evening we wandered into the restaurant and sat down at a random table. When we gave our waiter our room number after ordering, his eyes widened slightly and he said he would be back soon. Quickly after this, the table hostess came over and stated that there was already another table ready for us and took us over to a table a bunch of flowers and a card from the hotel wishing us a happy anniversary.
The restaurant manager then came over and told that the dinner was on the house and wished us a happy anniversary. A few minutes later he came back with a little gift box in his hand, and at that point we were absolutely blown away by this amazing hotel and the effort they made for us, then he said something which completely took me by surprise. He handed over the gift box and said “This is from your mother…”
This was a surprise because my mother had no idea where I was staying… The first thing that came to my mind was my mom phoning every hotel in Cape Town to find out if her son was staying there… though that seemed quite tiresome and I couldn’t figure out how she knew where we staying.
When we opened the gift box did things start to make sense to some extent. Inside was the little bride and groom topper Raquel’s mom has made for our wedding. This stems from a little tradition, the origins of which elude me, but goes along the line of friends and/or family taking the cake topper without your knowledge and keeping/hiding it until your first wedding anniversary, when they treat the couple to dinner and hand back the cake topper.
However, I was still perplexed by how my mom knew where we were staying. So I called my mom, firstly to thank her and understand how the hell she knew where we were. Speaking to my mom made me realized she had a network of spies and informants which I was not aware of…
Basically Raquel and I had arranged a lunch with some cousins of mine a couple of weeks ago. News of this lunch reached my mother’s ears and she proceeded to phone said cousin and include her in the plot to surprise us on our wedding anniversary. The lunch took and my cousin very casually asked where we were staying in Cape Town, as it was a surprise I showed it to them on my iPad while Raquel was busy. They proceeded to relate the location to mother dearest and accordingly she made arrangements for dinner and the return of the cake topper.
Raquel’s mom was also in on the plot as she had taken the topper and brought it with her when Raquel’s family came over for Christmas last year. The topper was then hidden at my mom’s house until deployment to Cape Town.
Up until before the phone call Raquel was convinced that all of it was organized by me and I wanted to surprise her with everything, however I think I must looked more surprised that Raquel. In the end it was such a treat to be genuinely surprised and treated by our mothers on this special day for us.