Catching Up on Summer: Part I

When last I posted, I mentioned the Dragon’s impending adulthood. Yet our summer was filled with far more activity after–we had plans every weekend–that went beyond our usual summer experiences, I never stopped to write about them.

So the double birthday. Every year, my partner and daughter share their birthday, and some years one of them is emphasized more than the other. In this case, Dragon turning 18 took center stage over my partner turning 48 (but look out 2020, because I have plans for 50).

We’d had a conversation while walking through a lovely part of Kirkland, and passed by an exquisite wedding dress in a shop window. We both agreed it would be wonderful to wear it, though it looked too small for me and too large for them. I mentioned that though I never wish to marry, I always thought it would be fun to throw an elaborate party and wear a dress that nice to celebrate life.

Despite insisting they didn’t want a party before, Dragon decided that’s exactly the kind of party they needed. Of course, we didn’t have the budget for a full-scale wedding, but the fancy dress? That was key. Not only were we all going to wear wedding or formal dresses, we were going to do it in … AN ARCADE.

Unfortunately, there isn’t the same level of arcade saturation these days as there had been in my teens, and many that exist in our area are either 21+ or filled with dark rooms, couches, and wall monitors, which we could easily achieve at our own house. We wanted pinball. We wanted PacMan and Mario. Dragon wanted Dance Dance Revolution, and by the gods, and some good references by friends, we found one: Another Castle – Arcade Edition in Edmonds, WA.

They still have machines that take quarters, let us bring in our own food (not drinks, and didn’t mind us bringing a couple dozen people in.

People were a bit skeptical at first, but once the Dragon and I had our dresses and veils, my partner was ready to buy a dress–a merlot red–and upon seeing his dad in a gorgeous dress, Little Fox wanted a new dress for himself. We thought he had a decent one that reminded me of a summer flower girl, but he wanted something over the top. He chose a golden dress with delicate flowers, and insisted on gold shoes and a gold crown. He loved the whole outfit, but couldn’t wear the dress in the car seat because of the wire hoop at the bottom of the dress (he put it on at the arcade).

Our friends came in twos and threes, most of them dressed in their finest. My boyfriend came in the suit he

wore at his wedding a couple decades before. One of my students wore her prom dress, and looked stunning. We ordered sodas and water, grabbed a bucket of quarters ($60 worth), and set about playing every interesting game available. The teens primarily stuck to DDR, which proved far more challenging in a wedding dress than casual clothes.

It was a load of fun, and we all agreed the arcade was exactly what we needed (we want to go back again just for a bit of craic). When the adults around us started buying lots of beer and other alcohol, we started packing up. We drove back home thrilled.

Wedding-Themed Birthday at an Arcade?

I give it five stars.

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