The breeze has been coming from the north for over a week. That means it’s cold. The other 99% of the time it blows out of the southwest and is much kinder.
We marked a milestone during Thanksgiving week – 25 years of marriage. We didn’t really celebrate, just enjoyed having the kids home. We’re trying to think of some grand purchase to mark the occasion. Our bedroom furniture was second-hand when Mark moved out of his parents’ home 27 years ago, and still shows the permanent marker scribbles made by Seth as a youngster. Our TV was new in 1988. I’m still waiting for steps off the back terrace instead of a rotting stump. But those things don’t matter. We’ll tend to them eventually. I truly want for nothing. Nothing except time to do everything that interests me.
We emptied the mudroom of warm clothing to get the kids outfitted to move cows from our highest elevation pasture with 10 inches of snow to a lower pasture with about 5 inches. We took the four-wheelers which we can load in the back of the pickup instead of dragging a horse trailer through the snow. The machines are handy for sure, but we use them judiciously, preferring to use horses for most jobs. A horse needs to be needed. Use a four wheeler too much and your horse won’t be any good the day you go to saddle him.
We had the mountains to ourselves and as the rest of the crew tended elsewhere, I brought up the drag with the dogs, Nan and Kate. Snow herding with dry cows is the quietest of jobs. The herd especially enjoyed the bitterbrush and I was happy to walk through the snow urging the dogs out around the wanderers.
The morning of our anniversary, before the kids arrived to change the empty nest dynamic, Mark and I laid in bed in the dark and talked over memories from a quarter of a century together. First I cried because it went so fast. Then we laughed when I talked about Mark’s naiveté when he married me. I'm sure he thought it would be easier than this. Oh, to find out the vagaries of a woman! A "tiger by the tail” comes to mind.
Someone said (actually maybe it was me): “Look for your mate with a magnifying glass, but look at your mate through rose-colored glasses.” Mark does that for me. One time he said, “I don’t see your faults.” But that was a long time ago. Now he could make a list! Let’s just say he glosses over my faults. And that is a gift. Not silver perhaps, but precious nonetheless.