POV: Pursuits.

I met my fiance, Rob, on a blind date—or, I suppose, as close to blind as you can get these days. Leading up to our meeting, my sister-in-law, the one responsible for our meeting, filled me in on a few key details: “He’s tall,” she said. “He’s funny. And he has a clean apartment.” Aside from that, I also knew that he was a violinist and that he loved wine. My sister-in-law had written an article that revealed the lengths he’d gone to properly store it in his apartment, including taping down the lights in his refrigerator, and investing in a device outfitted with a surgical-grade needle that allows wine drinkers to taste sips from an aging bottle without removing the cork.

“I hear you like wine,” I said at some point on our date, prepared to confess how little I knew on the subject, and that whenever I’d ordered a glass in the past, I’d made my choice based on which had the easiest name to pronounce.

“We don’t have to talk about stupid wine,” he said. It’s a line we repeat often—usually just before talking about wine—and laugh.


I’m often at a loss when asked how I like to spend my spare time. “I like food,” is along the lines of what I typically offer in response, and my other go-to—that I enjoy exploring the city on foot—isn’t any less vague. (Since writing is what I do for a living, it doesn’t seem to count, and blogging, to my dismay, has proven increasingly difficult to properly devote time to, though I still plan to try.)

It feels strange to admit that I don’t have a hobby—but it certainly isn’t for lack of trying. In college, I joined the snowboarding club despite never having snowboarded, and the gospel choir, even though I’d never sung (for good reason, as it turned out). After graduation, I took on a fashion internship, tried my hand at farming, and attempted to learn and love to bike. Though I was rarely a natural at any of these pursuits, I became addicted to the thrill of trying new things. The process felt a little like auditioning new lifestyles, and I grew to pride myself on the discovery that I could try even the most outlandish activity and find a way to like it.

Still, I find myself wondering to this day when I’ll stumble on the extracurricular love of my life, in the same way my friends have found and fallen for pottery or running or bread-baking.

In our first few months together, I had thoughts about making Rob’s interests mine. I asked him to teach me to read a wine label. I watched a handful of documentaries and attempted to make my way through a couple of wine-related books. But as much as I’ve enjoyed it, I can still barely decode a wine list and am often speechless when asked to identify a tasting note. But I do enjoy the fact that, by chance, a new world has opened to me—and it’s one that I can explore freely, without any pressure to fully understand its complexities.

I’d love to have a more thrilling answer to “what do you do when you’re not working?” But I’ve come to realize that my path is interesting simply by virtue of the fact that it’s mine. Meandering though it may be, I trust it’s leading me somewhere.


A couple winters ago, Rob and I spent New Years, as we have every year since, with friends on Orcas Island. To get there, we flew first to Seattle, where we spent two days eating oysters and my favorite custard-filled doughnuts; then, on New Year’s Eve, we drove an hour and a half to Anacortes, where we’d take a ferry to the island.

Slack under the weight of the previous days' spoils, I sat slumped in the front seat, bare feet on the dashboard. Sensing that I was moments away from sleep, Rob asked if he could put on a podcast he'd started earlier in our travels, but hadn’t had the chance to finish. It was about soil—or, more specifically, the ways in which various types of vineyard soil, rich with minerals or volcanic dust or remnants of ancient seabed, can affect the nuances of the wines they foster.

It all sounded terribly romantic. It was also, to my ears, indecipherable. I listened to those beautiful, mysterious words for a few minutes, squinting as if confronted with a page of dense, finely printed text. But the lure of sleep was strong. Out the window, the buildings and the pale sky blurred; a stretch of slate-colored water unfurled before us. The voice coming through the car speakers flatlined to a drone. My mind drifted. I felt my eyes close, and I let them.

You can find my previous POV entries, here. Thank you so much for reading.

Photo by Max Wanger.


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