Since graduating from law school, my summers have been filled with weddings, trips to the Cape to see Brad, long weekends with friends, pool parties, embassy garden events, lazy afternoons with girlfriends, and lots of eating outside.
Personally, my social calendar fills before May, creating this mad rush of events in the Month of Flowers. So, even before summer *officially* begins on Memorial Day weekend, I am adept at balancing my calendar, sleep schedule, and already have sunblock in each bag-- just in case.
As I sit here on this cold, windy Labor Day morning, I am reflecting on what was this summer: to me, to us. Upon his return from school, Brad and I had a whirlwind May, filled with loved ones vying at the last chance to say goodbye. Our Memorial Day weekend was an emotional rollercoaster as we hosted family, hosted our own goodbye party, closed on our home in AK, prepped for the movers, and celebrated Brad's birthday. And per usual: June arrived and then fun began.
But this summer: the fun was so...different. Far from the sundresses and chic poolside conversations about the latest Foreign Policy publication, I hung out with my best friend allthewhile clad in a tank top, northface pants, and chaco flops. No makeup. No hair products. Just a camera, a map, a camlepack, and a garmin.
We got paid to travel the country and experience new sights, sounds, and adventures. For those of you who tracked this trek, you recall the amazing "firsts" for Brad: bison on the range and not on a plate; eagles soaring above and not in a refuge; black hills; forest meadow; 4 feet of snow in Yellowstone-- with the latter being a first for me, too.
Our voyage to Alaska was a once in a lifetime, life-changing trip. Priorities changed. Family members were added. New bonds were forged. We grew as a couple. We packed in so much into the month of June that when July arrived: I was not ready to continue. But with deadlines looming, we painted, we gardened, we unpacked, we said goodbye.
As last few days of warm summer sun were blown off the island by the recent storm, I find myself incredibly lonely and missing the big lug. I got so spoiled this summer. We played chess by flashlight in the tent. We hiked up to marvelous peaks. We satisfied our culinary inclinations at Road Food's best recommendations. We welcomed a new puppy into our home and lives. We went to sleep next to each other each night. That pronoun: we...man, it hurts just to type it.
Later today, I will bake a pie and head over to our neighbors who hosted us for Fourth of July. Brad and I were together for the first and second summer holiday. Truly, he will be missed for the season's last hurrah.