1. A safe trip home. It always feels so good to see the landscape change just when we cross the Colorado border, feels so good to see those red rocks and pine trees and big sky — home.
2. A good book “on tape.” We almost always listen to at least one during the drive, usually science fiction or a mystery, and this time I got to pick — The Girl on The Train. It was perfect. The three women who read the parts of the three main characters were especially good, (that can make or break an audio book).
3. Our trips both ways, there and back, were good. This is something to be really grateful for, because being in the car for three days with two dogs during the summer can be kind of miserable, especially if you are tired and ready to get there already or something goes wrong. This summer we had a good run both ways.
4. Finding a new trail in Waldport. It’s in the center of town and only two miles, but it’s like you are in the middle of the forest. The day we went, it was drizzling, but the canopy was so thick we didn’t even get wet.
5. One more week at the beach. We did a circuit of all our favorite things, walking on our favorite beaches and eating at our favorite places and seeing some of our favorite people. We also went back to Cape Lookout for the first time in about 15 years, and did a terrifying but beautiful hike. It was a good last week.
6. Eric, the reason why this is all so much fun, and why it’s okay when it’s so hard.
Bonus joy: eating tomatoes and basil and cucumbers from our own garden, sleeping in our own bed, having good neighbors that I’m happy to see after so long gone, a good friend who took such good care of our place while we were away, going grocery shopping, the heat not being as hot as I feared after spending seven weeks where it never got over 70 degrees, a cool shower when it’s hot, a cold glass of water, pay day, how well the new flowers I planted before we left settled in, my foot doing so much better, giving myself permission to take it slow, a two hour nap.