It feels very strange to be back at work the day after Christmas. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I worked following this holiday. I’d venture to guess it’s been at least ten years. Were we really gathered around the tree just 24 hours ago, sipping coffee, about to tear into presents? And enjoying a holiday dinner of roast beef, mashed potatoes, green beans, and cheesecake a mere 15 hours ago? How can I work, with those memories fresh in my mind?
But work I must, because – continuing with the “hours” theme – in 48 of them, Tara and I will already be driving through the mountains of eastern Oregon, on our way to Nevada for a week of fun and relaxation. Gotta get as much done between now and then as I possibly can.
Christmas was awesome, in a low-key way this year. There was good food, good company, a gorgeous sunset on the 24th, and I got to see my kids. My 95 y/o grandmother even took a sip of wine. Can’t ask for a whole lot more than that. I mean, a little snow would have been nice, but hell, we can’t even get rain these days. We’ve had nonstop fog for what feels like weeks on end. Most of the ski resorts haven’t been able to open because this winter is turning into one big, dry bummer. If that doesn’t change soon, we’ll be looking at water shortages next summer. Yes, in the Pacific Northwest. It almost seems laughable, huh?
Speaking of looking ahead, at any given time Tara and I have at least tentative, if not solid, plans a year out. We were already planning next Christmas before this one even arrived. I can tell you what we’re doing over Memorial Day weekend (Sacramento for a wedding), shortly after Labor Day (road trip to the Black Hills and Yellowstone), and probably most every weekend in between (camping, Mississippi Street Fair, maybe even a quick jaunt to a middle-of-nowhere town in Wisconsin to crash a family reunion). Then there are other events planned – a weekend in Baker City, another in Spokane, a seaside trailer resort in Washington, a trip to Mount Rainier – where we just have to plug in dates. Hell, I’m hoping we can take an Alaskan cruise in 2015 and hit Europe in 2016. Tara and I are both planners who love traveling. It’s a match made in heaven. It sure sounds like 2014 will be another hectic year, but I think without the burden of our daily food challenge, and not having a wedding to plan, it should be a more relaxing year. Of course, we still have a townhouse to sell and a big move to make, but hopefully that will go quickly and smoothly.
Is it unusual to plan that far in advance? Do you know what you’ll be doing next summer, or in 2-3 years?
As for the next week and a half, I don’t know how much blogging I’ll be able to get done. Traveling in Nevada, it’s always hit-and-miss. Cell service is spotty or nonexistent all over the state. I’ll try to update, and I’m sure I’ll have a nice wrap-up. Some of the highlights of our trip will include:
- A haunted hotel in Tonopah
- An entire town that’s on the National Register of Historic Places
- A night in Vegas
- A New Years Eve extravaganza heavy on the “Boot Scootin’ Boogie”
- At least one night – maybe two – in Elko
It’ll be a busy week, but lots of fun. We’re taking my AWD vehicle in the event we do run into some snow, but I’m not holding out much hope. Spotting a ghost, on the other hand?
Definitely hoping that happens…