I’m a night owl in a state full of morning people. I face that reality every time I go out to eat. Nearly all the restaurants in my bedroom community close at 9 or 10. Anything later and the only options are the big chains. This past Saturday, we were ready for dinner at 10:30 p.m., so we settle for P.F. Chang’s, which closes at midnight. When we walk in, the large dining room is empty, except for two couples, and they are already wrapping up with doggie bags on their tables. We sit down and Miiko says, “We’re living Manhattan hours in Arizona.” So true. The night before we strolled into The Cheesecake Factory at 11:10 p.m.

I used to complain about the lack of restaurant options after 10 p.m. in Arizona. But it’s partly because we’ve romanticized the Bay Area. We’ve spent a considerable amount of time back home the last few months, and realized – or reacquainted ourselves with the fact – that many Bay Area restaurants close up shop early, too. Upon further reflection, there’s perks to late-night dining in Arizona. We’re always one of the few customers. We get excellent service and the food arrives fast.