Saturday afternoon in our favorite place. A little town called Swansboro, NC. A quiet, sleepy little town on the banks of the White Oak River in eastern North Carolina.
So rarely do we get here anymore. We meant to go to the beach at Emerald Isle, but saw hundreds of Harleys on the road headed to a bike fest. We don't need the beach today.
Where to go? Downtown. The quiet little downtown right on the water. Trees and benches line the little park. If the water had been warmer, my feet would have been in.
A couple in front of us sit quietly. Smiling at each other warmly. People watching... I'm guilty. Her hair beautifully curled, yet blowing gently in the wind. Years and years together. It shows. They don't need to talk. The water laps against the stone wall, she feels the salt water tickle her nose. She laughs softly.
Her feet still lovely. Beautifully polished toes in summer sandals. Rocking back and forth, feeling the breeze. They've walked through this town so many times. So many summers. The sun warms her on this April afternoon.
"That will be us in 60 years" I whisper lovingly to Michael. "No, honey..." He says quietly with a genuine smile... "That will be us in about 30 years... and really... it's already us."
It's getting cooler by the minute. A day which began warm with possibilities. Now, it's time again to return to life. To bills, to home, to pets, to their grandchildren, and yard work. But there will be more warm summer afternoons to enjoy the boats. To enjoy each other, to simply be. Together.
The bench will always be waiting.