The world of expectations of having twelve roses delivered by people driving vans to
more people than Santa Claus delivers to in an eight-hour work day brings fear to me.
I remember waiting until late at night, once at 9:30PM, for the love of my life to call
saying "They are beautiful" and wondering what went wrong as the flowers
arrived later than expected. How do I get in queue on the morning end of this
equation instead of wondering if they still count 11:59PM as fulfilling their obligation?
Sure, the expectations can be met, but only if you can control the various parts of the
equations, like get the flowers yourself, and get reservations at a time and place that
knows how to handle Valentine's Day traffic. For me, what's important is to keep it
fun and light, not like twenty folks trying to get into a Volkswagen.
The Gift of a Wine Weekend Getaway. Having spent time in Paso Robles, Napa/
Sonoma, Oregon and Washington, I think going to Wine Country makes for a great
getaway. You see, in wine country, they not only 'get' wine, but they 'get' food and
B&B's as well. To me, to wake up in wine country is the start of a perfect day. It's
probably the expanse of land and not feeling crowded that matters to me the most.
In Santa Barbara, a wine experience can be mixed with one of my favorite past times,
horseback riding with an ocean view. Here are my top wine destinations...
if you have enough lead time and extra coin, try French Laundry as the restaurant and stay at the Auberge du Soleil, but book well ahead.
Santa Barbara, California. Stay at The Eagle Inn, which is within walking distance of
the shore side open air shops and winery tasting rooms. Go horseback riding at Raintree Ranch Equestrian
Center in the UCSB college town of Goleta. Dine on great seafood at the Beachside Bar and Café for the
most incredible food and it's on the beach, where I gave some great gal an
engagement ring a few moons ago. Truly it's an experience for the senses. Yes, I still
have the gal!