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¡Hola! The big day is near, and we're so stoked to be surrounded by all of our family (as our friends are family too) on our wedding weekend getaway! We're counting down the days to the seaside fiesta and until then, take some time exploring our site and planning your trip to beautiful Baja California. xo Linda & Will
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The First Date

It all started on December 31, 2006, and ended (or more like, really started) exactly six days later. You could say that from the very beginning, we were in it for the long haul!

We wanted to get to know each other, but we're still not sure how we got the other one to agree to a week-long road trip... over something tamer and more traditional, like dinner. We could do just one dinner in the big city, or we could do seven dinners in random roadside towns while driving 500 miles through the California high desert.

Without question, we were neither tame nor traditional. It was go big or go home!

On the morning of New Year's Eve, Linda landed at Oakland Airport and Will whisked her away to the mountains. En route to Tahoe, we stopped at Donner Summit and snapped our very first first-date picture.

That night, we got Zenbuuuzled in Squaw Valley and shared our first New Year's kiss under a spray of champagne. If Will could handle Linda and her inner Vegas wild child that night, he could handle anything. The deal was sealed.

The next morning, any trace of a hangover was immediately quashed when Joe (aka the Fizzle) rallied us at 9 am to spend the glorious new day on the mountain. With her formerly sponsored snowboard instructor (aka Will the Thrill) by her side, Linda was ready to rip on her rentals.

Here she is shredding on the bunny slope...

And here she is in the pose she spent most of the day in — on her bum. Three hours later, she finally made it to the bottom of the hill. On the same run.

(Those are Fizzle's blue pants that Linda's wearing, and she still has them as a keepsake of her first foray into snowboarding. How she and Fizzle could possibly fit into the same pants is still a mystery.)

If she'd been able to ride at least a hundred feet without falling (ha!), this was the view she would've seen from the top of Diamond Peak.

(Linda wouldn't get to see this view until four years later, when we finally went back to the resort. That time, they let her on the grown-up lift and she made sure to milk every run.)

Despite a bruised butt, Linda was still all smiles at the end of the day.

The next evening, Will brought her to Lake Tahoe for a romantic sunset...

... And continued to try to woo her. How could she resist?

After a few days in Tahoe, we started our way down 395, one of the most scenic highways in California. The road runs along the entire Eastern Sierra and in winter, the peaks come alive with glistening snowcaps and gleaming culoirs.

We looked for ghosts in the abandoned California gold-mining town of Bodie. This dusty old town is preserved as a state historic park and looks pretty much the same as it did when the last folks left over 50 years ago. Everything in the town — from the buildings to the furniture inside them — is original, left behind by its former inhabitants.

We continued down 395 with amazing views out every window. Linda soon learned that dating a photographer meant lots of pit stops on the side of the road to get yet another good shot.

(No Photoshop below... don't the mountains look surreal?)

We passed Mono Lake, one of the oldest lakes in North America (over 1 million years old) and also one of the saltiest — the lake is 2.5 times as salty as the sea.

We looped around June Lake and June Mountain, one of our favorite places to look for pow — even days after a storm — when Mammoth is a circus. (Sadly, June closed for good this year and we don't know what will happen to this beautiful little community.)

Just past June and Mammoth, miles of cross-country ski trails wind around Tamarack, and Will put Linda on her first set of toothpicks — er, skis.

Somewhere along the way, someone thought it would be fun (and funny) to invent a pair of skis the size of sticks and attach them to your toes and send you on your way down an icy track.

Surprisingly, Linda mastered the art of cross-country skiing on a groomed trail by simply tucking low in racer stance and speeding downhill like a rollercoaster! (Note to anyone learning how to snowboard or ski: Speed is your friend, and steeper is better.)

After surviving that outing with no broken bones, we made our way to Lone Pine, home of the Alabama Hills and Whitney Portal. (Had we had an extra week, we probably could've convinced each other to climb Mount Whitney too.)

One day you can ask Will about the time waaaay back when he was a spring chicken and climbed up and down Whitney in a single day with only a lumbar pack and two water bottles. 'Cause that's hot, and he likes to brag about it while nonchalantly chopping firewood with his feet. Ah, mountain men.

In his car, Will kept a California road and recreation atlas which Linda drooled over so much, she had to go buy another copy — for herself. (She's a sucker for a good ol' fashioned map. Back in the old days before Google Maps and GPS, she used to navigate LA with only a road map and a compass — in the car, while driving, and could even fold the map back together with one hand — and got lost far less often.)

On the final day of our date, Linda was randomly thumbing through maps of Inyo County when she found a little point-of-interest icon in the middle of nowhere. That speck pointed to Fossil Falls, and even though we had no idea what it was or whether it was worthy, we decided to make a quick stop and see what made it so interesting.

A short hike led us to an obsidian river gorge carved by ancient lava flows. This otherworldly landscape was full of fascinating nooks and crannies to climb over, under and into.

We made it through that first date wishing we could go on our second one right after. Once you've traveled several hundred miles with someone, stuck in a car, wearing the same clothes day after day, and you can still laugh out loud and find endless topics to talk about — you know that person's gotta be the ONE!

To this day, Highway 395 remains one of our all-time favorite drives in California and we still discover something new every time we do it.

One (actually, two) of the things we love most about each other is curiosity and spontaneity. Even after five New Year's kisses and five years of road trips and faraway flights together, we still feel like we're on our first date.

We can't think of a more memorable way to celebrate our sixth New Year than with our most amazing adventure yet: the day we officially become "the Taylors" with our loved ones surrounding us!

xo Linda & Will