It was only 5:30. "It's early", I thought..."we'll get in and get out before the party crowd shows up."
And I could get myself the "margarita as big as your head" that this place was known for. Bonus.
There were still parking spots and we were seated right away and it was mostly families. The revelers weren't there yet. I'm a genius.
We order and we're just sitting and chatting about school when all of a sudden the Princess spouts off with an "OMG" (no, not "Oh My God"...literally "O-M-G"), at which point I start looking around for our waiter because I think maybe she's just commenting on the size of the margarita I've just ordered.
She takes off across the restaurant and disappears for a few moments. When she comes back, she's grinning from ear-to-ear and wearing some shiny gold beads.
"Look what they're giving away, Mommy!"
"Oh, cool. Let me see."
She hands me the beads and I realize that I have failed to notice the blinking LED Corona beer bottle dangling from said beads.
"Wow. That's entirely inappropriate."
"What is Mommy?"
"The beer bottle hanging from your neck, sweetie."
"But I like it!"
Before I can utter another word, she has darted back across the restaurant and disappeared again. Thankfully, my ginormous margarita shows up and I nervously begin shoving chips down my throat.
It's during this pause that I start to look around. And I notice now that there are indeed many families there in this Mexican restaurant enjoying Cinco de Mayo. And I notice that their children are ALL wearing gold beads with blinky Corona bottles around their necks. Teenagers, toddlers, tweens, babies...all of them.
I'm not quite sure this is what the Corona company had in mind when they sent their giveaways to the Mexican restaurants to distribute on Cinco de Mayo. Or maybe they did. Start 'em early!
At this point, the Princess reappears with a gift for me and I become the proud owner of a Dos Equis laser key chain, which when pointed in just the right light at just the right angle, shows a "XX" logo...kinda like the Bat Signal. For my own sanity, I'm assuming that the "XX" stands for Dos Equis and not X-rated.
She's so excited about how cool this keychain thing is that she goes back and grabs one for herself. I guess because she has super-secret invisible keys that need chaining.
I'm not really taking breaths between margarita sips now. Chips are forgotten. Straw in mouth, I'm internally debating my obligation to be a good parent and take this beer-labeled crap away or just let it go. Or keep if for myself.
I compromise and tell her she can keep the beads as long as she doesn't wear them. I'm starting to dig the keychain. The "XX" is a lot funnier after half a ginormous margarita.
The restaurant host stops by our table. "How is everything?"
"It's good, fine...everything is peachy."
And then he grins stupidly and hands us an "XX" branded maraca and something called a castania drum - also Dos Equis branded.
The Princess is ecstatic and immediately starts up with her own double-fisted percussion section.
Every kid in the place looks at her enviously and the stampede to the host begins.
I am now the proud owner of one string of gold beads with a blinky Corona, two laser "XX" keychains, one "XX" maraca (which the dog HATES) and a Dos Equis drum thingy (also not popular with the dog).
Yes, I know...the irony of "This is not a Toy" sticker has not gone unnoticed
I should know better than to try to do something wholesome on Cinco de Mayo. It's like trying to take your kid to Vegas without running into hookers (I have a story about that too...don't judge).