Today is the first of the week before my wedding anniversary.  As such, this week, I will be honoring my bride and some of our adventures or nutty times.

Today’s post is a recollection of our first Valentine’s Day as husband and wife.  We didn’t have much money, but we set off on an adventure.

The preparation for her was to pack a bag the night before.  It was February, after all, and we lived in the northern Virginia area.  Snow was out and it was cold.  She was to pack appropriately.  I packed my own bag as well.

There were rules for this adventure.  100 miles was the limit.  No more than that.  First thing in the morning, my bride was to choose a highway.  There were plenty to pick from.  I95, US29, VA28, several others, and a direction from the highway.  She chose 29 and south.  This was before the common consumer GPS, so I pulled out the USA Road Atlas (Rand McNally, of course!) and looked over US29 south from Alexandria.  Needless to say, we employed grace that day.  110 miles.  Worth it, though, except for offending our Hokie sensibilities.  Yes, we ended up in that hole of Orange and Blue – Charlottesville, home to our sports rival.

The trip was peaceful and just a good time to connect.  We enjoyed the time at Prince Michel Vineyard in Leon and some fantastic antique shops.  One of our first gifts to each other was an old lazy susan-style table with some ball bearings that never quite got replaced when they should have.  Once we got back home, we ended up stripping the finish and re-staining it with a nice mahogany in order to contrast the first major gift my bride had given me before we got married – a beautiful marble chess set with jade-bordered board.  We still have that set and have engaged the Princesses in playing on occasion.  The beloved table now hosts a small microwave and coffee maker in the basement, but I still remember this story whenever I head to the basement where it is located.

The chain Italian restaurant wasn’t all that good (we’d never heard of it), but it was part of the adventure, as was the little dumpy “down and out” hotel where we spent the night.  (Down and Out indicates that there were no halls in the hotel and that rooms on the first floor had doors that opened to the sidewalk adjacent the parking lot).

The point of this little uneventful story is that, despite the outcome of the adventure, there is nobody else with whom I’d rather enjoy our lives together.  And, yes, it has been one adventure after another.  Nearly 17 years’ worth.  And I pray there are many more.

What adventures have you engaged in while dating or married while watching your wallet?  How did you amp up the intrigue?

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