Much and Too Much

Well, it’s been a while since I’ve written but much has been going on if you want to hear some stories. Not much has happened in terms of the work towards my solo show. I had to take on a couple of small commissions a couple of weeks ago, so I’ve been working on those.

Then, I took a holiday break.

We don’t really celebrate Christmas in the traditional sense, but we decided to rent a cabin up in the mountains of Lake Arrowhead during the Christmas weekend and it was certainly an adventure of a lifetime, I’ll tell you what.

I kept checking the weather up there during the days before, hoping for some snow. It still hasn’t snowed here in the last year. Not really. But be careful what you wish for. We got snow all right. And much more.

On the drive up, we took the more scenic route up Old Woman Springs through Big Bear. It rained the whole time. Not a little rain. It poured. At 7,000 feet up there were high winds, ice and snow, and it was rather scary driving around those slippery hairpin curves. A couple of times, I thought we were going to die for sure, and we weren’t going any faster than 30 mph. That didn’t matter. That’s still too fast on ice. Plus, we both had to pee, for hours. For miles. There’s nowhere to stop. We were really suffering. We finally found some portapotties buried in some snow, got out, rushed through the sleet, and relieved ourselves after hours of driving. Sheesh!

Finally. we made it to the little log cabin, which was located high up on a mountain on extremely steep roads, but it was absolutely adorable. Beyond our expectations. The owners paid attention to every detail inside the place, making sure it was the most charming experience possible, and it was. We hardly watched any TV. Instead, we played Scrabble and crossword puzzles by the fire. It was super cozy.

We spent some money ordering Postmates to bring us food. Since it was pouring rain the entire time, and the holidays, we spent most of it on the tip, and also because of something odd that happened.

Somehow, Postmates made it seem like the restaurant was only a few miles away, but it wasn’t. It was an hour away!

When our driver finally got there, he seemed traumatized and asked Hannah, “How do I get down from here?” Hannah told him that we’d just gotten there, wasn’t familiar with the area, and to go back the way he came. But the driver said, “I’m lost.” The windchill was probably 23 degrees and the rain blew into the door. Hannah was wearing a t-shirt and freezing her ass off and wondered why a Postmates driver wouldn’t have GPS. I mean, how did he find the cabin in the first place? But the guy just stood there, expecting something, and he wouldn’t hand Hannah the bag of food.

We eventually got our food and I’m sure the guy figured out how to drive himself down the hill, but it was an odd encounter and it left Hannah feeling really guilty for hours afterward.

The last night we were there, there wasn’t just snow; there was an incredible storm: rain, wind, snow, and ice! All the pine trees shook and released what sounded like baby grand pianos falling onto the roof of the cabin, jolting us out of bed in the middle of the night every few minutes. I thought the trees were going to fall through the house. It was fucking wild.

We woke up to the car covered in a block of ice and snowed in to its parking spot. We weren’t sure we’d be able to leave. It took hours to scrape the ice to pry the car door open. We had to leave the heat run in the har for a couple of hours in order to scrape the ice off the windows. Hannah took an ax to all the icy snow chunks that blocked us from the road. It had to be broken up before it could be shoveled because it was dense ice. That took about three hours with a few breaks in between.

We were finally able to back out about six feet when the tires began to spin and we got stuck, blocking the middle of the road facing sideways. And now we were locked out of the house with no access to the shovel. Luckily, there was a bucket of ash from the fireplace on the porch and Hannah poured it under the tires. She pushed the car while I steered it onto the road, so we were facing the right way.

Very slowly, we drove down the steep, icy roads and made our way to the main street. But, at one point, we got stuck on a small hill and needed to put cables on the tires just to turn the car on it, only to take them off a couple of miles later.

The drive itself was beautiful. All the pine trees were white and crouched over covered in ice. I’d never seen anything like it before. As we climbed in elevation again, the fog got so thick, we couldn’t see five feet in front of us. It was crazy.

That ice on top of the car was so thick, it stayed there, with snow on the back spare tire, for the entire four-hour drive home back to the desert.

Yeah, so all that was fun…I hope your Christmas was just as interesting. Ours was one to remember.

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