first date

We've been flirting with Ashland for years, watching from afar, perking up our ears for news and tidbits of information, hoping, just hoping for the chance to say hello. And now, at long last, here we are, standing at the door of the party, struggling to come up with a good opening line. Tonight is "First Friday" in Ashland, the monthly gallery walk that everyone who's anyone will surely attend. Fortunately, we have Mitzi and Ron (my cool and talented cousin, and her darling and socially well-connected husband) to show us around and introduce us to some fun people. I feel like tonight is our "first date" with Ashland, and I'm actually a little nervous. What will I wear? Will my hair behave itself? What if, after all this time, we don't like it here? Or if Ashland somehow rejects us the way Taos, with her ever-looming Mountain is known to do? What if, what if, what if..........

Or what if everything works out great? That could happen too, and likely will happen. And after all, we're only dating. It's still early in our flirtation with Ashland. Too soon to even call it a relationship. There have been no promises made, no commitments, not even so much as phone numbers exchanged. My deepest hope is that we will all fall in love with each other and live happily ever after, but it's too soon to start shopping for rings or talking to wedding planners. We're dating, just dating. And tonight we'll do our best to make ourselves pretty and try to make a good first impression.

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We drove down the Oregon Coast yesterday. Not the first time for either of us, and I'm sure we'll do it again and again. A beautiful drive. Try it sometime. My pictures are available on Facebook.

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