Friday, April 6, 2012

Let’s face it, is pretty rare to find someone whom does not know anything about Easter and its general meaning. Although I have always found interesting how different countries or cultures celebrate it.

For instance, in Venezuela the tradition dictates you should get communion with god, realise the value of the sacrifice of his son (Jesus) and the realisation of his divinity after his resurrection, although everybody tends to go to the beach, drink and party like there is no tomorrow and get wasted… Basically the religious context is set aside but the last day (resurrection day) where people march to the nearest church to spend that day in communion.

Easter looks like this in Venezuela

In Australia (probably in every Saxon descendent culture) is a bit more disconnected from the church and a closer to a festivity for kids and teach them about what’s the meaning for these days; rebirth.

Years ago I thought about the bunnies and the eggs...
And it was a bizarre image to picture a bunny laying eggs coming out of its little furry bum.

In case you did not know the history behind Easter eggs or baby chicks I will tell it to you, they are symbol of rebirth and renewal; which for most parts of the world, matches the season (spring) and everything else grows around you. This concept might not apply environmentally (because we are in fall) even though the spirit keeps the same, finding enormous queues to buy chocolate eggs, bunnies or bilbies.

Oh yes, the chocolate Easter bilby.
Not extremely popular in Australia but you could find it as part of  the Aussie tradition.

And… how do I know of such long queues?

Well, the explanation is… Kathy (my missus) wanted a new phone to replace her old (and extremely slow at the moment) Nokia E71, which was a bit more than troublesome taking is two good minutes to open up an SMS and a lot more to start up the email application. The frigging phone was starting to show its two years of intense usage by crashing every few hours but the envisioned replacement provided enough hope for Kathy to hold on and keep using it until the service contract was due.

The explanation might sound totally absurd but it will make sense at the end, hang with me for the next forty three paragraphs. I swear, there is no alcohol in my body (at least not at the moment) and I am not deranged, although most of times I make no sense.

Two months ago, Kathy pointed me out the date of termination to get her new phone (an iPhone) and she started to count down the days to be able to go to the store, picking one of those beautifully designed devices and begin a world in which calls were not dropped because of phone crashes (although I am not sure the antenna gate is totally fixed) and application can be purchased and installed without having a software engineering degree. But I took over those expectations and shattered like a delicate crystal glass being smashed against the ground by telling her 

Hon, I don’t think you should get the iPhone at the moment… You know the super capitalist company called Apple will release a brand new version of it on the next couple of week (6 to 9 weeks) and we should probably wait to get it later on… A brand new or another cheaper, what do you think?

At this moment you probably think I am the sickest man alive and I am doing this just to make her suffer… but you are wrong! MUHUHAHAHAHaaaa….

(the evil laugh doesn’t help on my point)… Anyhow, I had the plan of buying the phone, but how to present it so it was a nice surprise? Some of the following ideas came to my mind:

Scenario 1 – The Restaurant Mystery

We could arrange dinner at a nice restaurant (we have been trying to reserve a nice decent restaurant for the last two months) to then wait for her escape to the bathroom (every woman does this) and at that moment place the phone in a noticeable area… but where to place it? On the plate? What about if we already started to eat could I place it in front of her place? What about if she never when to the bathroom? This plan was flawed from the very beginning plus the surprise level wasn’t going to be high.

Scenario 2 – The Glorious Delivery

I could try to arrange the delivery of some flowers to her office and get the phone included with the flowers. Sounds perfect, but… Then she had to walk three blocks to home with everything on and the one thing I will never do to Kathy is to put her under that situation. I know women love intense and big displays of affection, but I have seen lots getting pissed off because of that giant 25 kilos teddy bear her partner sent to cheer her up followed up by ‘you should have come early enough to pick me up …’ (as in you pick the gigantic shit you sent me) ‘… to then have a romantic dinner’. Soooo nope; another plan goes to the rubbish bin.

Scenario 3 – Easter is coming, right?

Here is where everything makes sense. At the beginning of this week, I decided to share some of my ideas with one of my friends and went though many different scenarios. Some evil and some… totally evil! But at the end the ideas diverted to buying a box of chocolate that looked uninterested to give it to her and let her find the phone inside. The only problem with this was the level of difficulty; had to be aware of details such as the wrapping and presentation (trying not to be suspicious) but overall it was a simple plan.

That night I went to bed, trying to formulate the perfect plan to delivery multiple surprises and then I thought… What about a chocolate egg with an awesome surprise inside? If I could pulled that up it would be legend.

On the next day the opportunity arrived, Kathy told me she was going to a chat (or presentation) of one re-noun belly dancer from Cairo, checking with me if we had anything scheduled, to which I respond nothing special other than ‘Ok’ while in my head I was fast forwarding every step I needed to complete… 

I had to buy the phone, the egg, set up everything on her phone (mail, calendar, contacts, favourite applications and music) to then find a way to cut the egg open, place the phone inside, shut it as it was never open and give it to her avoiding suspicion…. Everything had to fall in place on the next 20 hours if I wanted to succeed on it.

Setting things into motion.

Early on the given day and after calling Apple to check stocks and be certain I could go there to pick up the specified flavour of the phone, went to Chatswood Chase and then to Big W to find the biggest chocolate egg I could fit the phone in; got two of those (intelligence purposes to be explained later). On my way back to the office got a micro sim just to receive calls and set up the phone with it so Kathy don’t lose her line while I was preparing the surprise and more importantly to allow me to ring it while in the egg. Back to the office, charge the phone and installed all her favourite apps and once I was home loading her music and final touches.

Ingredients of the surprise

Now all I needed to do was, cut open the egg, put the box and phone inside, seal the phone and put it back in the box... Easy right?

To cut open the egg I used sharp and flat cutting knifes, preheated with hot water, allowing me to melt the chocolate without too much mess; it was a good idea to pop the egg in the freezer every now and then to maintain its shape.

Getting the egg ready to be cut open while the phone charges a tad more.

Egg ready

Phone ready

Sealing everything up!
Once I had two shells, I could fill up the egg with notes and the phone in the box, and proceed to close it. Taking one of the shells and place on a hot surface to then carefully place it in position and back to the freezer; is not supposed to seal it perfectly because you will need to fill up the gaps with melted chocolate then wrap it with the same foil paper.

It took a bit of work and patience. But once I was done it looked like new.

In case I had any accident and the first egg got destroyed in the process I would have used the second trying to save as much as possible from the first one. But given everything ran smoothly I was ready to give her the present and now all I needed to do was to wait for her to crack the egg open.

Now... Which one has the prize?

She got back home around 11pm and I told her I got those two eggs to celebrate Easter, Aussie style. Also specified to her some of the eggs contained toys for kids (sort of like kinder surprise) just in case she started wondering the weight of the egg, which she pointed out as soon as she had it on her hands.

What kind of cheap plastic toy could weigh this much? Is so nice you got me this gigantic egg! Thank you honey!

I had to hold it a bit more, trying to resist the impulse to tell her to open it once and for all, she pulls the wrapping foil and cracked the egg just enough to notice a bunch of pink notes inside saying 'surprise!'
Took out my mobile and rang her four times to which she replied 'what kind of toy rings like a phone? How did you get all these notes inside the egg?' Dug a bit more and there it was a box wrapped with pink paper, ringing again and vibrating. With a confused face took the paper off the way and stood quiet staring at the white box with the apple logo on one side and the picture of the iphone on top.

Must be honest, at this point I was on edge because she did not said anything for 3 or 4 seconds... but then turned around and said 'Oh my god! Oh my god! How did you do this?'

She kept asking me for two days how I did it.

Is not necessary to describe her reaction, she really loved it :) and so, the miracle of the Easter egg was born. I must admit, I am not the kind of guy that is planning for weeks a surprise, in fact I am pretty simple on that aspect but it felt so damn good... (she kept playing with the phone for three hours until at two AM when I was pretty cranky and told her to play with it in the morning).

Well fellows, I have shared one of my Easter stories. If you have one post a comment :)



Gabriela said...

Ay tan tierno como mi esposo.... Suspiro!

Reygt said...

OMG!!! mate that was an excellent surpise. Congrats on such imagination and planning


Rod said...

@Gabriela digamos que fue un momento de inspiracion :)

@reygt ta mate.

Nos Vamoz said...

You're brilliant!

These are the types of posts I can't show to my wife. I'm pretty sure that she's going to say "Look!!! Why aren't you such romantic like him?!!!" jejeje

Best regards!


Rod said...

Hahaha, believe me... I am not as romantic as it sounds... I just have my moments of inspiration and that's it.

Kathy tells me why I don't get her flowers more often (to me once a month is good enough :P)

Eduardo said...

jajajajaja vaya inspiración Rod, creeme... nunca, jamás se me hubiese ocurrido tal cosa... te quedó demasiado bueno... jejejejeje Felicitaciones por esa creatividad!!! Saludos! ;)