Friday, October 29, 2010

There's No Place Like Home

My husband sometimes thinks up ideas for us "getting away from it all" together. Often his suggestions have not been possible for a wide variety of reasons. And that bums him out. "You never say yes when I try to take you on a trip."

So this time when he asked me, I said yes. Right away.

The plan didn't have any of the usual hiccups. All of my usual reservations were already taken care of.

"Yes, darling! Let's go! And not only that....I'll raise your offer and suggest that we go for two days, not just one!"

The guy was pretty darn excited.

So we made our reservations and waited three weeks til the appointed time to go.

Bye kids! See you in a few days! Be good!

And then we got there.

We knew it was going to be a cabin in the woods. We knew it was a short hike to get to it. What we didn't know:

-the hike was up a steep mountainside and the trudging up there made my thighs feel like jello

-the photos showed two loveseats, but when we got there, there was only one. And it wasn't that comfy.

-we knew there was a loft for sleeping. What we didn't know is that you had to access it by ladder. Which isn't all that nice for someone like me that often gets up in the night to go to the bathroom, and has back troubles that make regular walking a challenge, let alone scaling a ladder while also trying to balance an iphone to use as a flashlight. (if I had dropped my iphone, boy oh boy that would have added severe insult to injury!)

-we hadn't realized there would be No Phone Service. No WiFi. No TV. We had brought books. We forgot to bring playing cards. We made a camp fire. We had some good conversations and went out to eat. But then 9pm came and we had done everything and for the first time in my life I was living what it means when they say "bored to tears." I cried. Literally.

-we hadn't realized that the bathroom would be of the bare essentials variety. Shower so narrow you can't bend to shave your legs. World's smallest toilet. No sink in there. You had to go out to the kitchenette for that. And the bathroom was stocked with toilet paper so thin, you might as well not bother. Oh. and the bathroom was, of course, located about 4 feet away from the single loveseat in the place. "Attention please! I am about to use the bathroom! Please be sure to hear every noise!" ugh.

-the water temperature was also ridiculously low, so no hot showers were possible

-we were not given enough towels to live on, but the trudge down the mountainside to ask for more was so unattractive that we just dealt with it

-we didn't know that the little dorm-sized fridge would actually turn out to be a freezer and make the food that we brought rather difficult to eat. Guacamole cubes, anyone?

-we didn't know how dependent we have become on the white noise of a fan in our bedroom. The dripping sink, 3 varieties of special noise from the ceiling fan, weird noises from the cabin itself, and of course the coyote howling outside the cabin (yes, seriously) would make it very, very hard to sleep. I am sure that I spent about 9 hours through the night with my face stuck in expressions that I would *not* want it to freeze in.

-we didn't know that the heater for this place would be utterly inadequate.

-we didn't know that simply using the coffee maker would short out the electrical circuits in the place.

-we didn't know that the water would taste weird and make the coffee taste horrible

-we didn't know that the utensils drawer was not very deep, and had no stopper to help you not pull it out all the way, sending all of the contents onto the floor. Then I got to hand wash every. single. item. Yay!

What we had really been hoping for on this trip was some time for serious rest and relaxation and of course some good time together as a couple. With just one not-very-comfortable place to sit, not enough heat, the ladder leading to and from the bed, and everything else, it definitely wasn't cutting it. The only thing keeping us there through the night was the fact that it would have been too treacherous for us to try to get down the mountainside in the dark. It was probably the longest night of my life.

It wasn't that it was a totally bad place. It was clean and didn't smell too weird and there were no bugs or mice in the cabin (that I saw). So, by most cabin standards, I guess pretty good. This place had been recommended to us, and we had heard glowing reports about other cabins there. What we learned was that the one we got was the one that hasn't been renovated in a super-nice way like the bigger ones have. Lucky us.

We ditched the place as soon as we could in the morning, but came up with a way to turn it into a win: My husband went back this afternoon with two of our boys, who have been wishing for a camping opportunity. I hope they have fun.

As for me, I was reminded all through the night of what I should have already remembered about myself:

-I do not like contrivances. (I even hate picnics because I think it's a stupid pain in the rear to take my food someplace else instead of just eating it at home.) I like real life much better.

-Taking a bunch of my stuff from the place where it normally is, to another place that I am unfamiliar with, rarely (if ever) results in a relaxing thing for me. I like to be home. I would have been happier using the money to improve something on the house, or pay someone to come do some deep cleaning. I like to spend time doing home improvement and then enjoying it forevermore. Trips to other places don't usually excite me. I have no travel bug whatsoever. Hopefully we can save ourselves some money and some frustration and remember this for the next time when one of us gets some crazy idea that we need to "get away" from our regular life.

No comments: