It’s a Christmas Day. Don’t let it get away.

Merry Christmas everyone! Happy Holidays!

I woke up late this morning to the loud music of Taylor’s snoring, missing the Sausalito sunrise, which I’ve missed every day for almost three weeks, as we’d been away on our journeys. Taylor and I spent the first part of the morning telling the people we love Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and that we love them. We spent the second part of the morning going on a walk in our neighborhood. Everything seemed new and alive from the rains during our absence these last three weeks. To Taylor, everything was most definitely new; and he took his time smelling and leaving his scent upon the newness. Taylor left presents three times. He’s selfless and quite a giver so his presents were really, really big. It was quiet; and it was beautiful. It was a sunny Christmas morning without snow.

I woke up late cos we arrived at midnight last night from our road trip, welcoming Christmas to California extremely tired before going to sleep. We had driven 2500 miles over the past three days, 18 hrs and 1200 miles yesterday alone. Our road trip home was not nearly as much fun as our road trip out east. Our original plan was for me to drive from Indianapolis to Chicago to pick up Taylor then make it all the way to Mount Rushmore, where we wanted to spend a morning or afternoon hiking the Presidents’ Trail. Instead, we hit inclement weather – rainstorms and blizzards on the first two days, forcing us to reroute our drive. We spent the second night alone in my car at a rest stop, the weather conditions were so bad with accommodations nowhere close; and we were in the middle of nowhere in Wyoming. Yesterday, our third day driving, was fine for the most part until the 50 mile stretch near Lake Tahoe from Truckee to Colfax through Tahoe National Forest. On the way out three weeks ago during the day, that stunningly beautiful drive took barely an hour (and only that long cos I stopped to take pictures); but last night instead took three hours. I was white-knuckling it the entire way up and down the mountainous forest swerving this way and that trusting my car to grip the ice-caked roads. I was trying to ease Taylor’s fears as he could sense we were not in a good spot. A truck 360’d in front of us and two others almost rear-ended us, but we avoided them all, each of us luckily coming away unscathed. My car was my saving grace, living up to the money I paid for it. Any number of scenarios could have put us in jeopardy, but as God and fate would have it, we were meant to arrive at home safe and sound, though tired and late. Got home just at midnight, to wish ourselves a Merry Christmas!!!

I can now cross off a cross-country drive off my bucket list; all said and done, we drove 5500 miles While I probably would never do that roadtrip again, I’m so glad I did. I drove from San Francisco to Washington, DC via Arches National Park and Moab in Utah, Fort Collins and Denver in Colorado, Greenwood in Indiana, Chicago in Illinois and Bethesda in the DC area. That was on top of the road trips I had already enjoyed, all around the Bay Area, all the way down to Santa Monica via the Pacific Coast Highway, all the way up Northern California through Oregon and to Seattle via the Oregon Coast Highway. All the time spent driving with Taylor afforded me so much time deep in thought to what was important to me, who was important to me, how I wanted to live and lead my life, what was next in store for me, and so much more. If I had tried, I think I could have figured out the meaning of life; as it was, I have come close. Maybe. I’ll take another road trip to make sure. Even more importantly, it was worth it to see so much family and so many friends. In fact, these last two months have been magical, seeing and spending so much time with family and friends. And I am so thankful for how so many of them were able to spend time with me – the gift that keeps on giving.

And I realized what I gave myself – and what my family and my friends gave me – was the greatest Christmas gift of all – time.

Time with my family.

Time with my friends.

Time with my dog Taylor.

Time by myself.

Today is a beautiful day.
Don’t let it get away.

What’s next?

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