Table for One in a World of 2+

Still in Kennewick.  The work conference wrapped at 4:45 today, leaving me with the rest of the evening to myself.  I had scoped out local wineries (when in Kennewick….) and decided on Barnard Griffin  because of it’s proximity to my hotel and because it offers an on-site bistro.  So, like a kid released for summer break I busted out of the over-air-conditioned convention center into the warm (78 degrees) afternoon and headed for the winery.

I was taking a risk.  At least, a risk for me.  I headed for the winery solo.  No dinner partner.  Me, myself and I.  It turned out that I was joined by Zinfandel, Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon (three of my favorite companions), but I was the only human at the table.

griffin barnard, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comWhen I was single I would go to movies alone (hiding in the dark was apparently acceptable), but I would never go to a restaurant by myself.  I felt too conspicuous.  Too….single.  To be honest, I’ve not been to a restaurant by myself since…well, I don’t know when.  But, this evening…the weather was beautiful, I’m in an area known for it’s wine…so, really, was I going to just go back to my hotel?

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comI arrived at the bistro shortly after 5 and headed for the patio.  There were two very large tables full of people.  I told the waitress that it was just me and took a seat.  Reviewed the menu and ordered a wine flight (my previously mentioned friends).  It arrived.  I sat back, took a deep breath….and life was good.

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comNow, I must make a confession.  I did pick up my iphone.  And sent texts to a number of people (including one to the husband telling him I wished he was with me).  So, maybe that’s part of the difference.  Back in the days of single I didn’t have such an electronic device to provide me with connections when even alone. Perhaps I’m not as cool as I thought.  Dining alone.  But not quite alone.

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comI ordered a gorgonzola mushroom flatbread.  That was pretty amazing.  And I didn’t have to share.  I liked that.  And I admired my table for one.

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comAnd then, the table of three to my right was joined by a fourth.  They asked if they could take one of my four chairs.  “Sure,” I said, “help yourselves.”  A few minutes later the large table to my left (12+ people) was joined by 4 additional people.  The waitress started looking around for more chairs.  I graciously offered my remaining two.  And things began to look like this:

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comWhere oh where have my metal chairs gone?  I was a table of one.  I could have scarfed down the rest of my flatbread and wine and darted off the patio. What did I do instead?  This:

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comThat’s right!  The solo girl sat back and ordered a glass of rose.  And lingered. And purchased a bottle of Zinfandel and a bottle of rose to take home with me.  This was the view as I left the winery:

barnard griffin, cookdrinkhike.wordpress.comWhat have I learned from this experience?  Well, I prefer to dine with a companion, but I am perfectly capable (and quite comfortable) dining alone. There is a part of me that wonders if part of that confidence comes from the fact that I have a wedding ring on my finger.  When I was single I think, at times, I felt acutely single, which would have been exacerbated by dining alone.  These days…I’m taken.  Off the market.  Hitched.  Dine alone today, but I’ll be with my husband tomorrow.

I came back to the room and settled in for the night…or so I thought.  Last night I noticed the sunset.  Not visible from my room, but obviously beautiful over the river.  This evening, around 7:45, I looked up when sunset was to occur.  8:13.  I’m 5 minutes from the river.  I scurried down to the banks of the Columbia and what follows was my (and your) reward.   Enjoy!

barnard griffin,

griffin barnard,

barnard griffin,

barnard griffin,

barnard griffin,

barnard griffin,

2 thoughts on “Table for One in a World of 2+

  1. I have often dined alone both as a single woman and married. I never minded it as long as I had something with me to read. I think since you cannot be engaged in conversation with yourself (unless you really want stares) it is good to have some thing to engage with besides the food. Being comfortable doing things by yourself is a huge asset; you never have to depend on anyone else to enjoy something. Growing up an only child I’m sure has helped me be more independent. Congrats on spreading your wings!

    Beautiful sunset photos too!


    1. Thanks! I might have to try single dining more often. Though the husband might protest if I tell him I’m going out to eat and leaving him home. 🙂 Could be a married thing, also might simply be a bit older, bit more comfortable in my skin thing. At least that’s what I’d like to think.


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