By Bruce Summers, Summoose Tales, Personal Historian
It took us 25 years to finally get on the long beautiful winding road to Paradise. My brother Mike and I married Jackie and Mary respectively in 1989. Originally, we planned on taking our wives on a joint fifth year wedding anniversary trip to Rio de Janeiro.
This was a great plan until we each had our first children during years 4 and 5 of our marriages. We later each had second children. Our lives got complicated with school, sports, Scouts, extracurricular activities, volunteering, busy careers and more.
Finally this winter, we compared notes Mary and I would be “empty nesters” after June. We would each be celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary this year. Three of the four children would be in college this fall and the fourth lived in the same town as his aunt and grandparents. He perhaps could stay with one of them for a week. We could finally align schedules, but where should we go?
We all enjoy wine tasting so we narrowed our choices to Napa/Sonoma Valleys in California or Washington State wine country. Luckily we chose Washington State, since the day before we departed on our trip there was a strong earthquake in Napa County, CA. Surely this was a sign that we had chosen wisely.
Well Washington State has a lot to offer, we decided to save the Olympic Peninsula and Seattle for another trip and head to the Yakima Valley. On the way we would stop over at Mount Rainier National Park. None of us had ever been to Mount Rainier. The more we researched the park the better it sounded. It was 14,410 foot tall and covered with large glaciers. It had historic lodges, hiking trails and the alpine wild flowers would be at their peak blooming while we were there.
So we booked our flights, arranged our lodging, and every night I would read a bit more about Mount Rainier, the glaciers, potential road construction (not more than a 30 minute delay), and the wild flowers were coming along nicely. They kept describing one of the places we were visiting as Paradise! A 2nd honeymoon in Paradise had a nice ring to it.
Note: this is the first in a series of blogs with photos and descriptions of our trip to Paradise. The scenery, glaciers, and the wildflowers were indeed lovely. I hope you will enjoy our trip, and perhaps even plan your own trip to Paradise in the near future.