"Well, you're not getting any younger!" I'm trying to figure out exactly what my wife meant with such a statement. It all started when I asked a few friends about recommendations for a little vacation for me and my wife, something different, unique. For a long while I thought I had it decided and she and I would be heading to Mexico for a week or so in a small cottage situated in a fishing village, mid-November in the warmth of Mexico... a winner I thought and even Cheryl was excited.... BUT, a local fella I know, Charly Culbertson, had recently been on a trip to Alaska, a semi private cruise on a converted commercial fishing boat, 65' length, wide beam, fresh caught seafood in South East Alaska, ported out of Sitka but cruising around Chichagof Island. Charly mentioned that the fella who owned the boat would be at the Eastern Outdoors Sportsman Show in Harrisburg and that Cheryl and I should chat with him about a cruise... so we did. Turns out, much to Cheryl's surprise, that the fella is an outfitter, black bear and brown bear hunts, 6 and 10 day hunt respectively. She reluctantly sat at the booth and listen to the chatter that accompanies any gathering of hunters (some lies but mostly from me). Talk of black bear hunts and accommodations on the boat ("little ship" sounds better to a woman) went on for a long while and Cheryl was beginning to get into the spirit of things; pristine beaches for walks, fresh caught food, whales and sea otters, no alarm clock, etc. for six days and all I needed to do was go out for a little while each evening to hunt black bears. She of course understood that I’ve got to hunt something or there'd be no cruise on the "little ship"!! I thought everything was going well. Cheryl and I even talked of still heading to Mexico and also really enjoying our six day private little cruise... We were about to make the deal when sudden like Cheryl gets a little smile (or maybe mischievous look) on her face... She turns to me and says "How about the 10 day cruise instead!"........ Talk about dead silence, even the guy in the next outfitter booth stopped talking....... The outfitter and I didn't know what to do, we stared at each other for a bit being taken completely by surprise at this offering. The 10 day "Cruise" was a Brown Bear hunt, not a Black Bear and a half hunt and Cheryl full well knew what she had just done but wanted to see some squirming I believe. Being of quicker wit than me the outfitter immediately started looking around and acting busy, I was stuck with dealing with the "How about the 10 day cruise instead!" statement. I didn't know where to start so I looked at the pictures on the wall to try to get her to visually see that black bear hunts were 6 days, brown bear hunts were 10 days... the plan failed, she wouldn't look. My mind was racing... what do I do?? I felt trapped, I could see the prize she dangled but thought that she'd snatch it away if I showed any fear or hesitation.... All I could say was "Why the longer cruise??" (I felt like an idiot for being in this situation, a situation I had craftily engineered to get a black bear hunt out of a proposed "vacation" with my wife.) Her reply, which I’m still thinking on, was simply "Well, you're not getting any younger!" With that I knew she was going to let me go and drag her along on the "vacation". We looked up at the outfitters display with prices and pictures, black bear hunts (6 day cruise) and a posted price, then brown bear hunts (10 day cruise!) and what looked like someone's social security number written in instead of a price... After a few minutes of cautions exchanges the outfitter and I got down to discussing deposits and schedules, constantly checking with Cheryl of course because she was now completely in charge of the entire operation. Cheryl is now going on a semi-private South Eastern Alaskan cruise late Sept to early Oct. 2008, I'm going along also and I get to hunt brown bear in the evening, if she agrees and the cabin is clean, clothes neatly folded and her chocolates are nicely arranged. I’m still a little leery of that "Well, you're not getting any younger!" statement.