The mountains sit east of us. We are hoping for beauty as evening falls. To the west the sun does not disappoint. My friend orders another Martini. I sip my Margarita and wonder why I haven’t taken more vacations.
Out on the patio, a woman in a green sweater raises her cell phone, straining to capture the rays playing across the hillside. She speaks to me, but on my bad side and I don’t realize that she is talking to me until she has already turned away. Critters rustle in the dry underbrush below the guard rail. I feel like a grown-up. I’ve packed a bag, parked my car in a gravel lot, and flown five hours to have this drink. I spent six decades not making such casual decisions. The tide has turned.
The bartender brings another round. We talk about the one day of rain which we expect. We rearrange our plans. This woman, my friend Pat, has talked me through some terrible times. I’m so glad that I came. I delayed this trip for several months and then, one day, just bought a ticket. I felt emboldened by some ripple of the universe caused by the passage of time. What else should I do with my money?
The light dances across the far horizon. I raise my camera. I press the button, and hope for the best.
It’s the eleventh day of the sixty-fourth month of My Year Without Complaining. Life continues.