When this post goes live on the morning of July 10, 2009, I won’t be at work.
You: What will you be doing?
You: Why? Too much Michael Jackson coverage?
Partially because of MJ, but mostly because July 10 is my anniversary.
You: Congrats – how many years?
Ten. Kind of a big deal.
You: Didn’t think you’d make it this long?
Actually, I never doubted it. (Although I’ll openly confess that I got very lucky with the whole marriage thing, I’ll resist the temptation to turn this into a public love letter.) If you do things right and also get lucky, you’ll only reach your 10th anniversary one time. To celebrate, my wife and I once talked about going to Europe for a few days.
You: Now that’s very expensive.
It is, although thanks to my zillions of frequent flyer and hotel stay points, the travel expenses wouldn’t have cost as much as our 36 hour jaunt to the White Mountains will.
You: So if it were less expensive to go to Europe than to travel to the White Mountains, why didn’t you go to England instead of staying in New England?
Because we wanted to go by ourselves, sans kids. A European trip meant paying a ton in child-care. So we’re staying local. We’re maximizing what we value most.
You: Which is?
Easy. For our anniversary, we wanted:
- Time together - We’re fortunate in that our work/life situations allow us more time together than many other hard-working couples, but little of that time is actually alone. This Friday and Saturday, we’ll actually be alone.
- Romance - Just being in the White Mountains will naturally add romance. (Truthfully, simply getting away anywhere helps.) And it won’t hurt that the place where we’re staying is supposed to be very nice.
- Relaxation - I already know that the look on my wife’s face will melt away all the outside stresses for both of us upon arrival.
- Recreation – We’re going to hike, play tennis, swim, and boat. We’ll also eat, drink, and be merry.
Could we do all of this for less than we’ll wind up spending?
You: Heck, yeah.
Of course! We could have gone up to the mountains and camp (putting aside, for the moment, the fact that I can’t put up a tent without significant help). But that’s neither my nor my wife’s vision for what what we wanted for our tenth anniversary.
Remember, money has no value. It’s what you can do with your money that can be (but is not always) so pleasurable. I can think of nothing more satisfying than tapping into some hard-earned money to enjoy spoiling my wife for a couple of days. She deserves it. And so do I.
What are you going to do in 2009 to enjoy your hard work? If you can afford to do something nice every once in a while, you should. Tomorrow is promised to no one so be sure to stay in balance.