Another spring, another birthday. Each one makes me realize how much I have to celebrate so I don’t even whine about the passing year or the higher level number I need to hit on the gym cross trainer when I enter in my vital stats before a workout.
Speaking of whining/wining….Leah, my oldest, had given me for the holidays a my birthday a trip to Napa Valley, California for some wonderful mother-daughter time and maybe a tour of a few vineyards along the way. We tried to talk Kelsey into going with us, but class schedules interfered, sadly. While never outgrowing the “mom stuff” (and because my work distractions forced me to look at airline tickets late enough that pricing had gone up), I took care of all of the transportation, tours and meals but Leah had picked out a lovely resort and restaurants and the journey began.
In an effort to be clever, I had my first flight stop in Chicago as I was winging across the country so that Leah and I could connect in the Windy City and make our way to San Francisco together. That plan was almost squashed as DC had one of its first morning thunderstorms of the season and Chicago was hit with crazy high winds…but the travel gods were looking kindly upon us and while I was a tad delayed (and had a three touchdown landing…I loved the pilots humor when he noted that “the third time was the charm!”) I had left plenty of connection time for flight #2 so we found each other at ORD.
Off to California we journeyed where we picked up our car in the middle of a very rainy rush hour and plodded along toward Napa for the next 2.5 hours. But, we were together and had stories to share and things to catch up on so other than the inability to see the road periodically through the driving rain, all was well. The rain did continue and we were in California when the Governor declared the end of the 5 year drought in the state….Leah and I could personally attest to the drought end with our soggy shoes and hotel umbrellas. But the countryside was lovely, the wine tastings were so much more enjoyable in Napa and had me pretending that I actually knew something about wine (beyond my typical “does it have a pretty label and fall in between 15-20 dollars a bottle? Very sophisticated). A few NTCA members were kind enough to share their favorite vineyards so we had recommendations to carry us along.
We Snapchatted with Kelsey to let her know that we were missing her and hoped to have her along for the next adventure. We Skyped with my folks to share California greetings with them and Leah, just starting a job with a new Big Law firm, had work to do while we were tootling around on Friday so we found vineyard wifi networks, cellular hot spots and Starbucks access as we made our way through the day. Technology was always top of mind and accessible (unless we were in caves too far below the surface). Don was a trooper and held down the fort and I journeyed home in time to celebrate my actual birthday with the east coast portion of my little family. Truly a win-win and a wonderful way to start a new age.