We didn’t have much time to celebrate my 39th birthday. A few hours shy of a day and a half. My mother could watch the kids for that long, and I told K I just needed to be AWAY.

Away with him, just us being ourselves, not mom and dad or housecleaner or cook or laundry mountain climber.

We arrived at our precious Airbnb a few hours before sunset and I was just itching to do some specific sort of nothing I couldn’t manage to put my finger on. (Don’t you love when that happens? My husband def does.) Anyway, I eventually became certain I needed to be outside. I took a quick bath first, Kris took the van for beverages, and we took our supplies on a “hike.”

We had good intentions, I promise. But there was this teenage-trodden path off to the side of the main trail calling softly to me. It ran down along the steep embankment of a large bridge we encountered not 50 yards into our work (possibly this is the sort of behavior that explains why we both need to drop some L.B.s).

I am not a teenager, of course, though I often still feel like one. K was a good sport and followed after, risking his post-football knees and everything. We found a concrete ledge and perused the teenager-y litter, analytically, the way we might discuss titles at a used book store or scholastic synergy during an impossibly dense theological conversation (K is a seminarian, for the uninitiated), said conversations usually conducted late at night so I never seem as smart as I obviously am. Anyway, the litter. The inexpensive beer, one standout pack of the more expensive “cool” cigarettes amidst the cheap brands, and even candy. They are still children, are they not.

And we are grown now. We looked down at the tiny creek, occasionally (furtively, K) to the left or right “to make sure no one is looking,” said K, which gave me innumerable opportunities to clown him, me the seasoned criminal tough girl that would never worry about anyone telling my hands or my hips that I can’t sit under a bridge on my birthday if that’s what I’ve decided I want to do.

We talked, blessed uninterrupted conversation, and I pulled out my iPhone in the midst of this reverie (not to check my notifications!) only to take a few photos. Shortly thereafter, for no particular reason, I looked up and had the presence of mind to press the right button, recording the 2 minutes (that were only a few seconds) you see here. Prob my favorite gift this year.

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