It’s very rare to have your bosses or coworkers honor you at work on your birthday. Maybe, if you’re friends with your coworkers, you might receive a pat on the back, and if you’re lucky, a cupcake. At Southgate, birthdays have always proven to be something special. And, when three out of the five workers at the store all share May birthdays (Rusty – the 21st, Nicole – the 31st, and me, Maya — the 19th), it’s always a wonderful occasion to celebrate.
Two years ago, we altered tradition at Southgate and decided to consolidate our festivities into a company dinner to honor each of us. Since then, we have been treated to Outback and Claim Jumper birthday dinners, but nothing prepared us for what was in store this year. Rusty thought that since this was my seventh birthday with the store, and since it was Nicole’s fifth (and last), we do something extra special. He proposed that rather than staying in Reno and going to some restaurant we’d all been to before, we go all-out and meet in South Lake Tahoe to dine at the exquisite 18th-floor steakhouse at Harrah’s Lake Tahoe, Friday’s Station. Obviously, the response was a resounding “yes!”
Rusty and Nicole worked out the logistics of carpooling and meeting in South Lake Tahoe, and Nicole passed her instructions onto Emily and me. In addition to meeting up for the dinner, we also planned to be in South Lake Tahoe for the Preakness Stakes, to see if Kentucky Derby winner, Orb, could snatch first place in the second leg of the Triple Crown. After a fairly uneventful drive to South Lake Tahoe, we met up with Rusty and Marie at Harvey’s Lake Tahoe’s racebook.
Soon after, we all anxiously watched the Preakness, only to have our Triple Crown-hopeful place fourth. It wasn’t a total bust, though, as Rusty had placed a bet on Preakness winner, Oxbow, to win.
With the Preakness over, we had some time to kill before making our way across the street and up to the 18th floor for our dinner reservations. Rusty acted as a tour guide, and directed us to all the little boutique shops just south of the Nevada-California stateline. As we window-shopped, we each built up an appetite for the dinner to come.
Now here’s Nicole to tell you about our fine-dining experience at Friday’s Station:
By the time we checked in for our dinner reservations, all of our stomachs sounded like a symphony of humpback whales. The staff at Friday’s Station placed us at a large booth overlooking beautiful Lake Tahoe, and we started out with salads to hold us over until the main meal.
After preparing for this special meal over the last couple weeks, we’d already looked over their online menu and knew just what we were ordering. Maya and I (Nicole) both ordered the mouth-watering filet mignon, Marie had a monstrous T-bone, Rusty had a specially-prepared New York steak, and Emily was slightly the odd-ball out at the steakhouse who ordered grilled chicken breast. Because we stuffed ourselves so much with our delicious entrees, we debated whether we even had enough room for dessert.
But within seconds, our waiter surprised Rusty, Maya, and I with edible chocolate bowls filled with sweet chocolate mousse and whipped cream, atop raspberry drizzled plates. After splitting these decadent desserts, and with our eyes glazed over from being so filled to the brim, we watched the sun begin to set over the mountains of Lake Tahoe and started saying our goodbyes.
Whether it was the excitement of watching the Preakness in an actual sports book where people were animated and cheering for their bets, walking around beautiful Tahoe looking in their exclusive boutiques, or enjoying the company of great people while dining at a top-notch steakhouse, this year’s “May Birthday Celebration” was one to remember. I know Maya, Emily, and I enjoyed ourselves so much and are truly grateful to have bosses that spoil us all not only on special occasions like these, but throughout our times here at Southgate Coins. And although my time here is ending shortly, this dinner was a fantastic way to celebrate all us May babies and to serve as one of the final occasions we can all get together outside of work.
Thank you Rusty and Marie for everything you do.
Happy birthday all!
-Maya and Nicole