Experimenting…After 18 Years

Mister Soandso and I snuck away for a few days last week in celebration of our 18th wedding anniversary.  An anniversary which has no traditional gift attached to it, by the way.  Hello?! After 18 years we don’t deserve something?  We chatted about expectations for the time away from home, hearth, and small children, and it quickly became apparent that both of us were up to a little experimentation.  I mean, after 18 years, who wouldn’t be.  So, we both packed with a nod to the crazy world of experimentation and headed off for the beach.

First off, you should know that I’m not much of a fun gal.  In fact, I’m pretty much a dud. When a friend learned that we were getting out of Dodge to celebrate our anniversary, she remarked that she packed her wedding-night nightie for her romantic trip to celebrate her 20th anniversary.  Frankly, that’s a no-go for me.  I don’t even have that tee-shirt anymore…if I could remember which ratty and tatty tee-shirt I threw in my bag at the last minute way back then.  See, a dud.  I’m just not that good at scheming and being romantic and girly/cute/sexy whatever.  I do, however, excel at my dudness, so I try to take a bit of pride in it.

However, I was determined to try harder for this trip.  So, a few days before I needed to frantically throw a bunch of stuff into a bag and pray it could somehow be considered an “outfit”, I actually looked at my pajamas.  Boy was that a sad moment.  At least I knew enough to not pack anything flannel or “footed” but still, I was stymied.  Finally, I decided a pair of faded but very comfy silk jammies would have to work.  He gave them to me – wouldn’t that count for something on the romance scale?

The wonder of actually trying to find something romantic in my wardrobe was such a thrill, it opened some floodgates for me.  What would happen if I could recreate the ambiance of our honeymoon, all those years ago?  After all, we had gone to the Oregon beach for our honeymoon and the weather had been pretty crappy for that trip as well.  So, I decided to go all out and just have fun.

In other words, I took a wig.

Yes, there is a whole backstory to why I have this wig and no, it isn’t very interesting at this time.  However, I have this awesome wig.  A weekend of experimentation seemed to be a perfect opportunity to try out the wig.  Plus, I knew we’d go out for drinks and I was testing my hypothesis that hiding my grey hair would increase my odds of being carded.

I braved torrential rains and traffic, picked up Mister Soandso and we headed out to the coast – he driving and laughing at my much younger hair.  Then, we braved the snow in our rear-wheeled Mustang and then the 1.5 inches of hail on the ground in Cannon Beach.

Come to find out, I don’t really care for experimenting with driving in snow without chains/snow tires.  I seem a bit too fixated on the potential for death.

After I pried my fingers off the seatbelt, dinner and many drinks seemed to be the answer.  So off we slipped and slided to a local hang-out.

And the bartender didn’t even pause when I ordered a Sidecar.  Well, she did when she went back to double-check the recipe, but she didn’t even hesitate with my order.  As in, nope, covering my grey hair apparently isn’t enough to make me look young anymore.  Sigh.  Chock one up for science.

Aged but unfazed, we still managed to have a great time.  If anyone is going to end up acting a bit silly and laughing after a few Sidecars, it’s going to be me.  If you don’t believe me, here’s some photographic evidence.

However, the biggest experiment didn’t happen until we got back to our hotel room.  We had spent quite a bit of our trip planning time in conversation about if I was ready, if Mister Soandso was ready, if we as a couple were really ready to take a pretty major step in our relationship.  But it felt right so we decided to do it.  In the end, we stayed up until nearly 3 am and the whole thing took quite a bit of floor space and checking with one another about how each felt about each option.  But we did it.  We paired down four boxes of family photos into just one.

Yes, I know you are amazed.  But with some faith in yourself and your relationship to withstand such a process, it really is possible to throw away over 500 bad photos of your first child’s first month of life.  All in the name of progress and the horrid cost of transferring these pictures into a digital format.

We were blessed to have some absolutely gorgeous weather for our last few hours at the beach.  Don’t you just want to head to the beach when you see this kind of stuff?  There is nothing like a sunny day at the beach to make this girl experiment with just how fast she can outrun the incoming tide, how many shells she can hold in each hand and still gesture while speaking, and how many dogs will let her pet them.

So there you have it, my big two day adventure as an experimenting fiend.  Crazy hair, throwing away photos and playing tag with waves.  Seems I really am pretty much a dud.  But I do like to laugh while I’m wallowing in my dudliness.

Downtime

This morning finds me drinking a rather weak cup of hotel coffee at the Oregon beach. In other words, awesome.  Mister Soandso and I snuck away for a few days to celebrate our upcoming anniversary and so here I am, typing on my netbook, drinking bad coffee, and hoping my spotty wifi holds on long enough to upload this. 

Driving out to the beach last night, Mister Soandso and I were talking about what a difference a year makes.  Think back to where you were last year.  How different 365 days makes, yes?  For some there have been births, deaths, good news, bad news.  And since it was snowing on us, the possibility of death was high on my list.

But we arrived just fine, although slightly frayed about the nerves.  And since I’m a stress eater, it seemed like a great idea to ice skate across the parking lot to a local hang-out and eat and drink and basically make a little too much merry.

So here I am, several hours, a little bit tired, a little bit rough about the edges, a little bit in need of some downtime.  Which I’m going to to take with a side of Advil.

But first, I’m going to surf through the posts I’ve been putting out here since December of 2008 and remind myself about just how wonderful these past days have been – filled with more good than bad, more happy than sad, more beginnings than endings.

I think I’m going to try to figure out my favorite post.  Chances are, it will be about something that made me laugh.  Those laughing moments remind me of what makes my years so precious.  Feel free to surf right along with me; downtime is better with a smile.