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Thursday, February 13, 2014


Valentine's Day is supposed to be a big deal: chocolate and flowers and dinner and poems are supposed to flow all over the place, making a big mushy mess of things every year on February 14th. Singles hate it (heck a lot of non-singles hate it) and everyone is left feeling slightly uneasy, as if perhaps they haven't done quite enough to measure up to the invisible romance bar portrayed in all those Hallmark commercials.

A rose is a rose...unless it's Valentine's Day and then it's a fortune.
Mark and I have been married a while--not as long as some but longer than many--so I feel I've come to know a little about what makes love work. At least for us. So here's my list:

Love is sharing the last of your warm plastic-y tasting water two miles from the end of the trail;

It's agreeing to rub your partner's feet even though you've been camping without a shower for six days straight and you can think of a thousand things you'd rather do. 

It's volunteering to carry the heavier pack, even though your feet are screaming, your back is aching and there's several more miles to go, because you know your partner is faring worse than you are; 

It's agreeing to stop for the 47th time to take a picture of another flower; 

It's insisting on eating the pork chop that fell through the grill onto the charcoal, claiming 
"I like it that way." 

It's being able to sit and watch the sun set over a mountain range and not say anything at all because just sharing the moment is enough.

Fire Point, North Rim Grand Canyon

So I say, go ahead and get the chocolate and flowers if you think they will be appreciated but don't feel obligated. You can spend an obscene amount of money on trinkets once a year, or you can spend every day trying to be the nicest person you can to the one who matters to you most.

City of Rocks, New Mexico

Happy February 14th everyone. 

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