When it comes to my travel writings, I try to only work on the piece while traveling and then post it, no editing, no re-reading, just a quick post. But with the last one, I felt as though I wanted to continue it on. I decided to see where the characters would take me. Thus far, it has taken me a few more paragraphs deep, but nothing too substantial. Things have been super busy as of late, so my writing has sadly taken a back seat, but I hope to at least get a few paragraphs a week over the holidays. Keeping with the style of my travel writings, this post has little to no editing done on it.
She opened the oven, looking at what seemed to be a masterpiece in her mind, even if it was only a casserole. She spooned in the last bite off of her plate, tipping her wine glass back to wash it down. It was then she realized she had just finished bottle number two of wine. When the third bottle popped open, she knew that tomorrow morning would be more difficult than she really wanted. This is vacation though, so she decided to throw caution to the wind. Rummaging through the few DVD’s she had taken from the lodge, she settled on P.S. I love You, settling into the comfy side of the couch, glass in hand, bottle to her left. Technically, there were a box of scripts at her feet, but she decided to forgo those until after the movie. As the end credits rolled and she poured herself the last of the third bottle, she realized a mistake had been made. No girl, recently dumped and three sheets to the wind, should watch that movie. She felt as though she cried enough tears to last a lifetime, all over this fictional character that gave her a romanticized idea of how her future lover should be. With the scripts still at her feet, she chugged the last of the wine, stumbled to bed and fell asleep.
‘Thump, thump, thump.’ Sam started to move, only to realize the room had suddenly started spinning uncontrollably. ‘Thump, thump, thump.’ As she slowly tried to balance herself, making her way to the door by leaning up against the walls, just as she began to open the door, the inevitable was coming. Sam darted for the bathroom, without even seeing who was at the door. By the time she exited from the bathroom, she had forgotten all about the person from the door, so it took her by surprise to see a young red haired, freckled girl sitting on the couch. ‘I’m sorry, I hope it was okay I sat down,’ said the girl. Sam did a quick one over on the young girl as she stood up. Short, maybe five foot one, or five foot two at most. She was skinny but not in an unhealthy way and the most gorgeous collarbone length red hair. ‘Hi, my name is Nora, my grandmother said you might want someone to show you around, I hope I didn’t come too early?’ Sam glanced at the clock that read 12:30, ‘Shit I slept forever. Oh, sorry. No, you didn’t’ come to early, I just drank too much last night. Where are my manners… Hi, I’m Sam,’ as she stretched out her arm, ‘Nice to meet you Nora, I would love some company this afternoon. Do you mind if I shower quickly?’ ‘Not at all, I will go back to the lodge, get the four-wheeler ready and wait for you there.’ And like that, the mysterious, harmless red head was out the door just as quickly as she had walked in.
As Sam made her way towards the lounge, she noticed a four-wheeler headed her way, slowing down as it approached. ‘So, you ready to check out the countryside? Anything in particular you were hoping to see while you were here?’ said Nora with the biggest grin on her face. Sam just shook her head, climbing on the back sliding into Nora. ‘You have two options, grab those bars behind you, or put your arms around my waist, its up to you,’ Nora said with an devilish grin that caused Sam to be suspicious towards just how innocent this red head was. Before she even realized, Nora took off, Sam without thinking wrapped her arms tightly around the tiny waist in the drivers seat. Nora began to slow down as they were approaching a narrow passage of trees into, what looked like to Sam, an impossible trek for the four-wheeler. The way Nora maneuvered and twisted the vehicle around trees, deeper into the woods amazed Sam, especially since there was no trail in sight. ‘We are about to start going uphill, so you might want to grab the back rails. It gets pretty steep and you might end up pulling us both off’ said Nora with a tone of seriousness in her voice. Sam quickly let go, grabbing the back rails, shockingly missing the warmth of Nora’s back on her.
When the finally reached the top, Sam was flabbergasted by what she saw, the tops of hundreds, maybe even thousands of trees in all directions. She knew they had not been riding that long, but she could not make heads nor tails of where the cabins were. She just stood there in awe of the world around her. She had never seen so much nature in her life. Sam’s parents had moved her around some growing up, but always from one big city to the next. She had friends who would go away, to cabins or camping, but never her, until now. The view alone, was enough to make this trip worth it. It was at that moment something to her left caught her eye. Nora was spreading out a blanket and Sam noticed a basket opened, with what looked to be food and a couple bottles of wine. There was a moment, when Sam looked up and there on the mountain was Tim. That same smile he had used a hundred times before to get him out of something or that he used to get her forgiveness. She felt a hand on hers and Tim was gone, replaced by Nora. Sam slowly made her way down to the blanket, taking in all of what Nora had done. The wine was open, poured into a couple of plastic cups. Next to the wine there was sliced cheese with crackers and some meat.
‘All of the customers that come stay in the cabins get this kind of special treatment’ sipping her wine, Sam asked? Nora looked away before she responded. ‘Not usually but Gram noticed you came alone, with two cases of wine, instead of with your boyfriend. She thought you could use the company,’ said Nora, with a hint of apprehension. Sam just laughed, and took a spot on the blanket. They sat there, sipped their wine and made small talk. Sam talked about college, meeting Tim and the book series she found that he stole. Nora just sat there and listened, hanging on every word. She was so entranced that when Sam stopped talking, Nora did not even notice. ‘Nora, Nora,’ Sam said quietly, reaching out, laying her right hand on Nora’s knee. Nora quickly snapped back to reality when she realized the green eyes she had been staring into so intensely were staring right back at her. ‘huh, sorry what did you say?’ she asked. Sam just giggled, ‘I said, you should have told me to shut up half an hour ago. Now tell me about you.’
Nora just smiled back, “there isn’t much to tell. I was raised a couple towns over and when I graduated high school I came out here to work with my grandparents.” “What about college?” Sam asked as she sipped her 3rd cup of wine. “I have taken a few classes here and there, got my basics out of the way, but I still have no idea what I want to do with my life. I’m too young to make that kind of commitment.” Sam started to cut her off, “but surely you can’t expect to just work out here the rest of your life? There is so much more out there.” Nora’s entire demeanor changed, as she started to get very defensive, “And what is wrong with working here the rest of my life? I happen to love the country, the scenery and I get to meet new, interesting people every week.” Sam quickly knew she had to correct her mistake, “Nora, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to offend you. I’m sorry.” Nora just seemed to ignore her apology. “The clouds are getting really dark. We better pack up and head back.” And like that, Sam knew she had ruined the entire trip. She quietly cursed herself as she started to pack everything up. But just as they made their way to the four-wheeler, the sky opened up with thousands of raindrops. Nora cursed her luck. “There’s a small shed a few minutes from here, we should go wait out this storm there.” Sam did not say a word, just shook her head and grabbed on to the back bars of the four-wheeler as Nora sped down the mountain.
Nora covered the vehicle as Sam grabbed everything and they both piled into the tiny shed. As Nora lit the lamp, Sam realized this was not just a shed. In fact, it was more of a mini cabin. There was a sink, chair and even a small bed. There was even some décor along the walls. “This has got to be the loveliest shed I have ever been in.” Nora just smiled, “This is an emergency shed. They have them all over the mountain, for cases just like this. The weather can change relatively quick up here.” Sam watched the smile quickly fade from Nora’s lips as she remembered the conversation they just had. Without thinking, Sam reached out for Nora. She grabbed her by the wrist and pulled her tight into a warm embrace, hugging her. Nora was taking completely by surprise and did not say anything until Sam released her, “What was that all about?” Nora had not realized that Sam was crying. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said anything. I just… I have just been somewhat of a wreck since my boyfriend and I broke up. Nothing seems to be going my way and here we were having an amazing time until I screwed it up. I seem to do that no matter what.” Sam opened the door and started to walk out, but Nora grabbed her by the wrist, “Where are you going?” “I figured you wouldn’t want me here anymore, so I figured I would walk back,” Sam said as she tried to walk out. Nora would not let go of her wrist, instead grabbing her other wrist and pulling her inches from her face. “You do realize it is like a monsoon out there, and it would take you almost 2 hours to walk back,” Nora said with a smile, “Plus, I doubt you could figure north from south.” Sam lightly hit Nora on the arm, freeing her wrists. “My phone has a compass, jackass.” Sam just smiled, jokingly.
Just as Nora and Sam decided to sit down, a loud thundering roll made its way through, shaking the shed. Nora screamed and practically jumped into Sam’s lap. Surprisingly, Sam just wrapped her arms around her letting out a little yelp of her own. They both just looked each other in the eyes. For that brief moment, the rain and wind slowed and Sam could count as each raindrop hit the tin roof. Everything slowed around them. It wasn’t until Sam was leaning towards Nora’s face, that she realized she was about to kiss her. Nora saw the look come across Sam’s face and softly planted a kiss on her check as both women laid back and fell asleep to the rain falling on the tin roof.
When Nora woke up, Sam was standing by the doorway watching the rain let up slowly and the sun start to reach its rays out past the clouds lighting up the mountain. Sam heard Nora rustle the make shift bed behind her but did not turn around, completely taken in by the view laid out before her. Nora quietly got up off the bed, making her way to the door. She softly wrapped her arms around Sam’s waist. “I bet you don’t see this in that big city of yours?” Sam just stood there, taking in the magnificent view in front of her, turning around, face to face with Nora. Sam felt as though she had no control over what happened next, she just realized without thinking, sliding one hand behind Nora’s back, the other behind her head, pulling her lips to hers. The past few weeks had been rough for Sam, losing her boyfriend of almost four years and a job she loved, everything slipped away in that instance. As Nora and Sam embraced, the last of the clouds departed, allowing the sun to shine bright over the entire mountain and Sam realized she could not imagine being anywhere else in the world in that moment.