Wednesday, July 21, 2010


Confession: I love surprises. Well, surprises that end with water sports, sushi and wine anyway.

For my 30th Birthday Josh had a surprise weekend planned. Here are the clues he gave me:

1. I needed a sturdy bathing suit and water shoes- what a look!

2. I needed something nice to wear.

3. Pman needed to go to my parents for a few days.

4. We would be no more than 5 hours away from our beloved P, but that did not mean we would be a full 5 hours away.

I thought of whitewater rafting, which I love love love, but since Josh thinks that is what idiots do before they die, I knew that is not what the bday weekend would entail. One day, about a week before the trip I said, "Are we going tubing?"

He looked at me blankly.

A month or two before we were engaged I planned a surprise trip for Josh. I told him to take off work from Friday through Monday. He came home that night and instantly said, "We're going to Boston."

He was right then, and for reasons neither of us understood, I was right about tubing. Sometimes, we are just tuned into each like that- weirdos.

So off we went for a Virginia weekend of tubing, wine and all the yummy food we could stuff in our faces.

Josh made reservations at a little B&B called Chester in Scottsville or Scottsylvaina or Scottstown, we can't remember, but we do remember the county was Fluvanna- you just don't forget a name like that. The town had 1 BBQ place, a pizza place that closed at lunch time and all the used broke down cars a girl could want to see in a weekend. The best part was, it was a mere mile away from the tubing place, so at least I knew there were no early mornings on my bday weekend.

Friday: We Arrive.
We got to the B&B an hour early, which threw the Inn Keeper for a loop. She directed us to the BBQ place or the "restaurant with the big chicken in front..." and told us basically to GET OUT and NOW!

We ate BBQ with Scottsylvainaville's finest and headed out in search of some w-i-n-e. We found a cute winery that was also a B&B. That was cheaper than the one we booked. And the people who ran it were welcoming.

We drank their wine, ate their cheese plate and rolled on back to our weekend home base. Now, I realize the Inn Keeper must put on her happy pants at 3p.m. because when we returned it was all champagne and "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!"

Josh and I ran upstairs to get ready for dinner whereupon I dropped my blush in our recently peed in toilet. Excellent. I pulled it out. Threw it away and washed the first 3 layers of skin off my hands and arms- up the elbow.

She made an excellent dinner for us- including homemade gazpacho that Josh kept calling Gestapo. She also did a wine pairing with the food- although the wine she gave us was Spanish and not a wonderful local VA wine.

Interesting approach.

J and I capped the night off with a bottle of wine and about 10 rounds of Gin Rummy on the back patio- I won most of them, naturally, it was my birthday.

Saturday: Bumpy Ride
We went tubing in the James River and Josh kept saying things like, "I'm on the James River siiirrrr." In a bad Southern accent, which is weird because all of his family lives in Tennessee, like at the base of the Smokey Mountains- back woods Tennessee? He should have the accent down.

Josh also found (and slammed various areas of his body against) every rock and boulder the James River had to offer. We saw a drunk man puke up-river from all the other tubers and helped another drunk girl look for her camera that became detached from her tube.  After wading through a strangers river puke, we stopped looking.  We did not find it, but I bet you could have guessed that.  Despite all this, I think Josh may have turned a corner in his protests again white water rafting. Yippy!

Saturday was "restaurant night" in Charlottesville, which is where the University of VA is located and was about 30 miles away from our B&B. We dined on sushi, beef based miso soup and glowing- for real Glow-Ing- seaweed salad. Delish. (minus the beef based miso.)

On the way home we found a stray dog. We drove up and back, up and back on the dark windy country back road trying to get the dog to come to us. In the end in ran in the woods to likely be dinner for some fox or deer or muskrat. What would we have done with another dog anyway? I'm kinda over the one we have.
(I did not just say that.)

Sunday: Back to reality
We found a quicker route home to P. We dined on crabs and ice cream cake with my fam. Parker and I blew out a scented candle because my lovely sister and her surfer handyman of a boyfriend do not keep a ready supply of birthday candles in their kitchen. I did discover though, that they have a tub of strawberry icing at the ready- always.

Nice trade off.

Happy Birthday to me! Well done Josh! Much Love :)


The Empress said...

happy birthday, and you will love your 30's. all the doubt and angst are replaced by solid belonging. and the 40's are even better...each decade, you like yourself more and see that you're not so bad after all.

glad you had fun traveling around, and you know what made it easy right? that dagumm awesome minivan..

ModernMom said...

You had me at #3!!
Sounds like a great way to celebrate a birthday.
Oh and by the way, I did the white water rafting thing about 15 years ago and it was a blast!

Jesson And Rey Ann said...

nice post!

Joan said...

Sounds like a wonderful birthday. I miss celebrating all of them with you and the fam.