This past week has been a true blessing. I returned to Vancouver to a week of freedom. No school, no work and very few obligations. Friday was an impeccable end to my week. I slept in, just a bit. My love and I planned a lunch time picnic at the beach that far exceeded what I thought it could be - much like our relationship thus far.
It began with a bike ride. This was my first bike ride in Vancouver. Having lived in Vancouver, which is a very bike friendly city, for four years now I'm very disappointed I hadn't biked here before. As we pedaled down the tree lined streets of my neighborhood to pick up a bottle of wine, I was immediately transported back to California in my mind. I love riding bikes with my brother amidst the open fields and roads. I did not expect to reap that same kind of joy here in the city. It's always surprising to find out that you thought was misguided. We rode down the steep seaside hill that levels out with a gorgeous view of downtown and settled against a log on the beach. Our bikes propped up on the other side of it.
The big bay that feeds into the Pacific Ocean is sprawling in front of us. Mountains are held up on the other side, like wheel-away set piece from the theatre. Although I've spent much time gazing at this sight, I never reach the point of accepting that something so spectacular is right in my backyard. Just to the right is a range of glass and metal - downtown nestled at sea level. We both agree that it's impossible to describe, or appreciate, until you are sitting in its midst.
Sipping on rose wine, I dig my feet into the sand. I've never felt so lucky. An amazing man sits to my right and I am perpetually lost for words that voice how I feel. My mind imagines many great ones, but some how they've yet to be given a voice. In time they will.
Our picnic is far from ordinary. Beside the wine, there are baked brie sandwiches filled with fresh basil, lush tomatoes and procuitto. The ultimate summer fruit - strawberries. A homemade chocolate tart that lies in a shortbread crust. For once, I can take no credit for cooking. It was all him. We share bites of the rich tart and clues for the crosswords on hand. Once both are completed, we pop back on our bikes and head home. Both filled to brim with happiness.