We went out of town for my birthday.
We stayed at the Albion River Inn, which is much too fancy for people like us. I first went there years ago, with a girlfriend who had more expensive taste than I did, and I never forgot it. Lala and I went there for our first wedding anniversary (six years ago!). This year, I used my birthday as an excuse.
I can't remember a more relaxing trip, ever.
We did nothing. Yesterday, true, we made the grueling five mile drive to Mendocino to see the craft fair (shades of hemp soap and spoon windchimes) and to eat fudge while sitting in front of the excellent Gallery Bookshop. I found yarn (Lala found it, actually — the Mendocino Yarn Shop has moved, and is still worth seeking out). That was the extent of our out-of-hotel adventures.
Beyond that? We moved from table to tub and back again. Y'see, in some of the rooms at this inn, the spa-tub is IN THE WINDOW (in front of private land where no one but you will walk) and you can lie in the tub and watch the ocean. (Room 17 is stunning.)
I read a lot. (While in the tub, mostly.)
I knitted a little.
But mostly, I sat in the tub. I sat in the tub in the morning. I sat in the tub at midnight. I sat in the tub before dinner and got our breakfast coffee in to-go cups so I could get back in the water. Yesterday afternoon, I stayed in the tub for three hours, after which I stumbled to the bed for an afternoon nap (which I don't actually remember doing. I wasn't drinking — it just felt like I was). Last night, we lit the fire and got in the tub. We got out to do grown-up things (taxes, of course) and then while Lala slept, I got back in and listened to the waves break in the dark.
Today, we left the hotel, sorrow in our hearts. We made it up to ourselves by wine-tasting in the Anderson Valley as we drove through it. Now, you have to know that Lala and I both enjoy four-dollar wine. Livin' high for us is wine on sale at Safeway (true! You can get a fourteen-dollar bottle of wine on sale there for seven!). We don't know what's good or what's bad, and we don't know how to taste. And neither of us have ever been financially able to go to a winery and put our noses in the air and say, "Whyyy, yes, darling, this DOES hint of palest sorrowful rose and alabaster mint grown on the steppes of inner-east temperate Yugoslavia."
But today, we went to a few wineries on the way home, because buying a bottle or two won't break the bank (luckily). We were honest at Husch Winery, and we told Susan, "We have NO idea what we're doing." We found a few bottles we liked and brought them home, and this is a conversation we just had (word for word), a few minutes ago on the porch while our salmon cooked on the grill and while we sipped our incredible bottle of Breggo Chardonnay Reserve.
Lala: The nose of this is…
Rachael: Nosey![Falling over laughing.]
A moment later, while tasting it Very Seriously:
Rachael: This tastes like…
Lala: Things we can't afford to eat!
Takeaway: We are not adult enough to drink wine.
Speaking of adults, this is how Clementine looked when we left:
Things are good at Chez Hehu. I like 41 WAY better than 40.
And apropos of nothing but I think this is lovely and I adore Dustin Hoffman more than I ever did before (which was a lot)–please watch this about how he found out he'd been brainwashed (it's worth your time):
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