Even the weather couldn't ruin this past weekend. Don't get me wrong, it was cold and wet and pretty miserable. The driving was white knuckled, and I spent almost the entire time soaked to the bone. But rarely have I had a weekend filled with more laughs or received more of a reminder that in my friends I will always find unconditional love.
I left for Dulles Airport around 8 in the morning on Friday to catch my flight. Despite the rain, I didn't experience a single delay on my trip. I got into my rental car in Lansing and drove all the way to Bear Lake, where Kelli and Christina were waiting. Kelli did some truly amazing research online and found a great deal on a gorgeous cabin right on the lake. And she gleefully spent the rest of the weekend trying to cryogenically preserve us with open windows and her fan.
When I finally pulled in the drive, we immediately went out to seek food. There was a restaurant down the street, but as it was past 8:00, it was closed. So we hopped over to the gas station to find an ATM, and asked the girl there where we could find something to eat. She said the only place open was the bar, but it was all the way across town. Now what does across town mean to you? A 20 minute drive? More? "Yeah, you'll have to go to the other side of town, it's about a mile and a half down the road." We were definitely in podunk. That said, the food at the bar was nice and the waitress had a good sense of humor.
We went back to the cabin to build a fire, but it was so wet, we gave up. And determined as we were to get silly drunk, it didn't happen. We went to bed early. And the next day, we went horseback riding in the rain.
I can't even pay proper tribute to our hour long ride in print. I have never laughed so hard in my life while sober. It was Kelli's first time on a horse, and the manager of the stables put her on the biggest horse on the ranch, Joe. She couldn't steer him, and managed to whack herself in the head while trying to go underneath a branch (not a tiny branch, one the size of a tree trunk). Christina and I were behind her and actually had to stop our horses until we quit laughing.
We embarassed the heck out of our guide, Oscar, talking about our sex lives and making dirty cracks about everything we thought of. That's what they get for sticking a girl who hasn't gotten lucky in 5 months on a horse of that name. I may have gotten Lucky, but when I woke up the next morning and felt every sore muscle in my body, I realized that Lucky got the best of me.
After coming back to the cabin and taking a long nap, we drove over to a bistro recommended by the woman at the ranch. The food was tasty, my wine was fantastic, but we were so full and tired that we wanted nothing but to go to bed. After putzing around the cabin for a bit, we did just that. Another exciting night for the little old ladies.
Early to bed, early to rise, and we were up and out of there just after 8 in the morning. I was lucky enough to make it to Little Man's first birthday party. I'm so happy I didn't miss this important event, and I got to see even more of my friends. When it came time for me to go, I didn't want to. I wanted to stay and visit and talk.
The drive to Lansing was treacherous, and I was exhausted and soaked by the time I had dropped off the car and made my way to the gate. Luckily, my flight wasn't canceled, because so many were. I got back to DC and still had a two and a half hour drive home. But hey, you'd drive to the airport if it saved you $400 in airfare. But it meant that I was worn out today, so I decided not to have my piano lesson and caught up on my emails and talked to my husband. Then I fell asleep and took a 6 hour nap. Whoops.
Today's lesson: Visiting home can be completely fantastic. But when it's time to return to regular life, leaving everyone you love can truly make you ache.