Saturday, December 24, 2011

I Left Town with Santa and Returned with the Fool on the Hill

December 21st was our 25th wedding anniversary. How time flies when you're spending it with your best friend: still in love and still laughing. We had some lofty ideas about what we were going to do to celebrate: from returning to the scene of the crime in Gold Hill, NV to spending a few days on the Rogue River in southern Oregon at our favorite getaway. What we decided on was a little staycation to explore some of our own neighborhood and off we went to Healdsburg, a little town about 20 miles to the north of home. 

We went up Tuesday morning and returned Thursday afternoon. The weather was unseasonable to say the least: cold in the morning, but sunny and in the mid sixties during the day. I actually had to water my flower barrels before we left town!

We rented a small cottage about a quarter mile from the downtown square and did a great deal of exploring on foot: walking to breakfast, lunches and our anniversary dinner, 9 antique stores and cooperatives, and two second hand stores. One afternoon we hopped in the Honda and visited two nearby casinos and entertained ourselves for a couple of hours at each. On the way back we stopped at the huge Salvation Army Thrift Store complex north of town (an awesome place to shop for anything). 

Needless to say we had more to show for the shopping than from the casino play, but it was all fun. We found 3 shirts for Rod and 3 sweaters and a tank top for me. We scored a pair of vintage wrought iron stands that will make great new stick stands for our fair displays and this awesome jester's hat (Peter Connors has met his match).

On our first day walkabout we passed a small bar and restaurant called Barndiva. The menu looked interesting so we decided that's where we'd have dinner on the 21st. When we arrived I mentioned to the hostess we were celebrating our wedding anniversary and thought nothing more of it. During a fabulous and tasty dinner our waiter delivered to flutes of champagne as a treat from the house and the truly decadent dessert arrived with candles. We felt really special and were delighted with the whole experience.

It's amazing what you can find close to home and the best part is that it took less than an hour to get home. We're usually on the road this time of year, but since Rod saw his family in November we find ourselves at home with no promises to keep for only the third time in 30 years. What a delightful dilemma! We're going to do a little work outside today since it will again be sunny and warm. Christmas day we're going to pack a lunch and head down to Marin County for a picnic and hike on Mt. Tamalpais and Muir Woods.