Erik Quinn: The Heart of a Family: Wild Life

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Wild Life

I am home happy and healthy, smelling vaguely of campfire smoke despite washing my hair twice. This horrible quality self-portrait is of Chris, me, and Nadine. When I looked in the mirror this morning, my hair was very Tina Turner-like after days of my ponytail absorbing dust and sweat. Friday night I finished work and headed out into the forest. Of course, I left the instructions on how to get to where I was going on the kitchen table (DOH!). Despite this, I beat the sunset by a long shot and found my girlfriends deep in the woods. They had selected a primitive but beautiful spot right on the river down a powdery dirt road. The only humans we encountered all weekend were fishermen and their dogs motoring up the river and drifting down early in the morning and later in the afternoon. When I arrived, the ladies had just opened a bottle of Patrone tequila and were trying to be ever so good until I joined them. Nadine grilled mahi mahi and vegetables, and the three of us ate around the little table in Nadine's brand new trailer (it was only the second night she had spent in it). After dinner, it was off to sit around the campfire, try not to think about the movie Deliverance, marvel at the brilliance of the stars in the sky, drink good tequila, and smoke not-so-good cigars (coff coff). Saturday we got out the lounge chairs, books, and beach towels to lie around in our swimsuits all day long, enjoying the quiet beauty of the glassy river and whispering pines. I eventually got used to the beady eyes of the chipmunks surrounding us. One of the striped little critters was discovered spread-eagled on the screen door of the trailer trying to figure out how to get inside. We did actually lose our chocolate-covered macadamia nuts to one who successfully scaled the screen and entered through the open slider where the doorknob is. We eventually decided to take a quick dip in the river, which was much too swift to really swim in, and then we giggled ourselves just short of urinary incontinence trying to make it back up the steep bank of the river and up the hill without getting our wet bodies dusty. We did more grilling for lunch and dinner and went to bed fairly early Saturday night. One of the problems with being in the woods without laundry to do or diapers to change is that there is so much time to think. I found myself sinking a bit thinking about Erik as the girls talked about their grown kids but pulled out of my slump this morning as I built a fire and dodged projectiles thrown from the tree by cackling squirrels. We had a hearty breakfast and drank our coffee around the fire before I got in the Jeep and began my dusty, quiet drive back into town. It is a gorgeous day today, and I got to see the landscape change several times in my 45-minute journey home. I traveled along the river, lined with lush grasses lit by sunlight and the giant, reddish trunks of the ponderosas that guarded our campsite, which eventually gave way to ugly, lanky, more sparse lodgepole pines, and finally to the fragrant, sun baked sagebrush and juniper trees that told me I was home. Erik did not make eye contact with me when I came through the door. He looked like he was ready for a nap and was happy to let me feed him a snack, change his diaper, and put him to bed, although he didn't seem to notice I was ever gone. The cat, though, is another story. She is reading me the riot act as I type this and is actually going hoarse. Overall, it was a successful weekend and I feel refreshed for the week ahead. It is very good to be home.


Blogger Kerry said...

What fun! I am sitting here thinking what a great way to spend the weekend with your girlfriends.

I can't wait, though, til I also get a little more recognition from my little blonde-haired one as well. Hello!! Don't they realize we carried them for nine months?? What guilt I will lay on him when he gets older! :)

7:19 PM  
Blogger Aspen said...

OMG that sounds like fun Nancy! It sounds like you have an amazing group of girlfriends (aside from our little cyber girlfriend group). Glad you got to enjoy a few days away.

I would love to be with you on one of your outings. How about, I just invite myself next time. ;-)

Glad you got a refresher, you deserved it!


7:27 AM  
Blogger Lisa R said...

I want in on the next trip...

9:20 AM  

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