Saturday, July 16, 2011

Wife Rule #157: Find the Treasures - II

Another recent treasure:

On our way home from our weekly date, as we approached our neighborhood, on a whim I pulled off the road into the parking lot for a small walking path that runs along the edge of the golf course and follows the river towards the canyon. Though we have jogged and biked along alternate paths through this general area, this was our first time along this particular stretch.

It was already past sunset. The cool blueness of dusk enveloped the landscape, the long shadows of the valley having long since merged into the mountainside. Only the tops of the peaks still glowed in the last yellow light of the day.

The earth around us was suspended in a hushed stillness. The low, rolling hills of field grass and wildflowers between the path and the groomed lawns of the golf course only occasionally murmured, when a lone bit of breeze wandered through the valley. The marsh grass and cattails surrounding the ponds betrayed no movement.

We strolled through this mesmerizing scene, noting the various landscaping features we admired in the backyards of the homes that bordered the path. Cheerful, yellow light spilled out from some of the windows of the homes. A few children scrambled past us, engaged in an early night game. A few residents sat, enjoying the beauty from their patios. We exchanged waves of hello with them as we passed.

My wife's fingers tightened around mine as we made our way up the path. We walked clear to the end before turning around. Her eyes shone with peaceful joy as we chatted softly about the homes, the yards, the grass, the flowers, the canyon, the mountains, and of course, our children.

Our younger children were safe at home, already in their beds, in the care of our oldest daughters. The darkness deepened, signaling our time to return home. The whole walk had only been maybe thirty minutes, but even so, we hadn't done anything spontaneous like this little diversion in what seemed like a long, long time. But now that there wasn't a sitter to send home and a schedule to stick to, we had a whole, new world of options open to us.

This built-in babysitter thing is a game-changer. That day was a good day.

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