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Spa Weekend

Sonoma Mission Inn
Nov. 11, 2006

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On our second date together, Jen took me to to the Cooperage, a little pizza joint on UCLA's campus. She had a coupon for a free, small pizza, which we shared in blissful poverty. (I reciprocated a day or two later by driving her 40 miles out to Altadena so we could cash in my coupon for a free, large burrito at Burrito Express.)

The perks have gotten better, but the basic idea is still the same. This weekend, she brought me along to use her free coupon for a weekend at the Fairmont's Sonoma Mission Inn and Spa, which she got as a signing bonus. Susan at the front desk upgraded us to a suite with a fireplace on our arrival, and we spent the next 40 hours wandering around in our bathrobes from one pool to the next, from the bathing ritual to the couples massage, and generally just enjoying the uncrowded grounds. We began to feel so swell that on Saturday night we almost placed a $6,000 bid for a signed Chagall lithograph. We were saved when friends of Jen's recognized us and pulled us aside to chat, bringing us down to earth. Instead of buying the Chagall, we drove into Sonoma where we, at last tired of light wine country fare, spent $40 on a hearty meal at Murphy's Irish Pub.