"Everybody has a secret world inside of them. All of the people of the world, I mean everybody. No matter how dull and boring they are on the outside, inside them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds. Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands maybe" ~ Neil Gaiman (A Game of You)


Running Away From Home

I highly recommend it.  I think this will be my new annual tradition.

My husband drove me up to Idyllwild, CA on Friday afternoon.  We stopped at the delightful Aroma Cafe for lunch alfresco.  The food was delightful -- he had a veggie sandwich with delicious artisan bread and fresh sauteed vegetables, and I had a yellow squash gratin.  Plenty of leftovers to take home with me.  He then stopped at a boutique and picked me up a dozen hand made truffles.  Worth every calorie, the owner promised.  She did not, however, promise they were worth every penny -- at $2.50 a truffle, they were a trifle pricey.  But on a week-end like this, the splurge was worth it.

We then made our way to the cabin.  It was every bit as charming as the photos suggested.  My husband brought in my luggage, helped me mess up the covers on the bed, kissed me goodbye, and left me in bed for my afternoon rest.  With no fear of traumatizing the children, I walked around naked until dinner -- body image issues be damned.  (I don't believe anyone reading this will find that information titillating.  I am, after all, a 45 year mother of six children.)  When it cooled down enough for clothes, I put on my fuzzy jammies, ate quiche for dinner, and crocheted while watching an episode of Top Chef.

Ah, but you are wondering... Did I ever get any writing done?  Yes, yes, yes!  I wrote in the evening of my first day, the morning, afternoon, and evening of the second day, and the morning and afternoon of my final day.  My muse was on high alert, and I finished one flash fiction story and my short story rewrite.  The rewrite of my short story, "Wishes," was the most satisfying.  I knew I had some heavy lifting to do, writing in scenes that didn't yet exist.  I knew what I wanted to achieve, and by the end of the weekend,  felt I had achieved it.  The second to last scene made me outright cry.  I can't say everyone will react the same way to my story, but at that moment, I knew that I had pulled everything I had in me out onto the page, and I felt so satisfied, like I had really done it justice.  I couldn't stop grinning once it was finished.

I drank my Celestial Seasonings under the pines each morning, listening to the lyrical sounds of the birds and the creek running through the property.  I saw hummingbirds, butterflies, dragonflies, squirrels, trout, daisies, Indian paintbrush, and a couple of birds I couldn't identify.  The air was crisp, and it was so beautiful and peaceful.

My husband brought all the kids with him to pick me up Sunday afternoon.  I enjoyed showing them around the place and seeing how many people we could fit in the hammock.  It felt good to see them again, and I was happy to be home... but I can't wait to do this again next year!


Renee said... a wonderful retreat for you...I am one who does not feel completely safe when alone...and find this go off alone for the weekend with no car or people around.. amazing....Good for you....and to get so much work done...Super!! Thanks for sharing this with us....I had a good chuckle over the naked go girl!

Sue Jackson said...

Oh, how wonderful!!! This sounds like a dream come true, Shelli. And what an amazing husband you have! A weekend alone in a quiet cabin in the woods - heaven!

Glad you made good use of it and got some writing done - good for you!


Shelli said...

Renee -- The couple that owned the cabins were wonderful. I kept everything locked up, and I did feel safe. I admit to a few moments of concern when I heard mysterious bumps in the night (normal woodsy things, I'm sure).

Sue -- I thought of you, how you always do better on vacation. My little trip seems to have done wonders for me, as well. Very recuperative, and no CFS payback at all. :)

Anonymous said...

*cue jealous sigh* If your recounting of your weekend was like the writing you did, then the world in for a treat. "My husband brought in my luggage, helped me mess up the covers on the bed, kissed me goodbye, and left me in bed for my afternoon rest." Okay, so that one line alone was like a romantic vintage with so few a words. Yowza. :) Glad you had such a wonderful weekend. I know the few quiet moments I have in the morning is when I do my best writing. I can't imagine having a whole weekend to myself. Actually I can, so I may have to one of these days. :) Welcome back, though. We missed you.

Shelli said...

Carrie -- thank you! I'm glad you liked that passage; I was trying to be discreet, but I felt like it was an important part of my perfect weekend. Certainly started it off wonderfully! And I highly recommend it to everyone. (The getaway, not the messing up covers. Although, I guess I recommend that as well. ;) )

Anonymous said...

I also loved the line about messing up the covers. Your weekend sounds fantastic.

Shelli said...

Thanks, Cathryn. :)