The ride was filled with iTunes, out-loud magazine reading and conversations we don't get to have as we're going, going, going all the time. Sugarland came through the speakers singing, "These are the days." And as I looked out at the desert, then the cities, then the coastline, I thought, "Yes. These are the days."
These are the days of just the two of us right now, as our first is tucked safely inside. These have been the days for the last two and half years of marriage when it has just been us and a dog, able to pack up a car and head over to California. There have been very good days. There have been very hard days. There have been days that just didn't last long enough. There have been some days where we didn't want any more days.
But the days always end with us together.
I had to soak up a different side of wine country this long weekend since I couldn't soak up the actual wine itself. I paid more attention to the way the vineyards were patched across the hills. I noticed the even, straight rows of vines. I followed the rolling hills with my eyes across the sky. I listened more intently to what others were saying. I tasted the wine in my head as they were described using fruits and natural elements. And I made my husband promise to bring me back in a year or so when we could enjoy it all over again.
We spent the warm days roaming the streets of downtown Paso Robles, going in and out of cute shop after cute shop. We walked to grab coffee in the mornings and we ate at the first good looking place we would stumble upon in the afternoons. The chilly evenings were filled with wedding-related affairs: dinner with the groom and friends, a rehearsal dinner with all of the wedding guests, and of course, the wedding. We'd end the nights in our quaint rental house we were sharing with friends, talking about the day and attempting to bake cookies in the toaster oven.
The wedding itself was beautiful (and how could it not be with the wine country as the backdrop?). Weddings always make me remember the vows we made two Marches ago as it was somewhat of a blur on the altar. I hear them much differently now having experienced better and worse, sickness and health, richer and poorer.
A look from my husband, a groomsmen standing next to the groom, seals the vows once again.
While the weekend was full, it was very much relaxing. There wasn't a dog to tend to in the mornings. I felt the burden of emails lifted (and so they were ignored for a few days). We didn't have to keep the house spic and span - just picked up enough to respect our roommates. The chilly mornings and nights called for porch-sitting. The warm afternoons called for getting out of the house.
This was our last planned non-family-holiday trip before Baby will be joining us. The thought overwhelmed me at times as I attempted to soak every last drop in, knowing these days of just the two of us are counting down.
And so I remember, these are the days.