Saturday, October 15, 2011
Eighteen years ago this November, I married the man of my dreams, and we set off on one of the most memorable honeymoon adventures ever.
Yes, our honeymoon was to be a night at a beautiful, upscale honeymoon hotel suite, with room service...and then a 5 hour road trip to my favorite mountain in Arkansas, where my grandparents had paid for a two night stay in a cozy cabin.
We arrived at our posh hotel exhausted from all the festivities, and from staying up late the night before to decorate for the reception. We were ravenous from only having cake since breakfast, and picked the fanciest, most expensive food we could order from room service, and waited for our meal....and waited.....and waited...after an hour, we called to see what the hold up was...and were told it would be up in just a moment. ANOTHER hour later, our food arrived, stone cold.
We gave up on food, but noticed that it was getting rather chilly in the room, and turned up the heat....which promptly failed to come on. A call to guest services, and maintenence was sent up. They had a new guy and were having trouble figuring out how to turn on the heat in that unit. Since it was the end of November, we were really hoping to have a HEATED hotel room, but it was not to be. The heat NEVER came on. No matter, we could just take a hot bath in the fabulous jacuzzi....except that the heat was not on to the water tank either.
The next morning, after battling hypothermia all night, we went to the appartment to have a nice hot shower and thaw out before what was sure to be a magical two days of honeymoon bliss.
We got to the cabin without a glitch in our tiny 10 year old Honda Civic, even though the engine was a more than a little taxed by climbing the mountain. We hiked all over the place in the crisp Autumn air, and took photos of EVERYTHING we saw with my 110 camera. (It mostly all looked like brown blobs in the end.) We planned to dine out at the lodge for our evening meal, and arrived at 7:00 for dinner. The dinning room closed at 6. Our cabin did not have a mircowave, just a mini fridge and a fireplace, so we decided to find something to eat in "town". Tim, against my better judgment (see his blog for more details on how he should pay attention to my better judgement), decides to drive down the far side of the mountain.
We are now lost in a strange rural area where there is an erie smoke/fog in the air. I am not kidding, it looked straight out of a horror flick. The smoke was coming from hundreds of tiny smouldering fires where residents had decided to burn all their fall leaves while it was damp and calm out. We finally found a convenience store...and there are no cafes, or anything else anywhere near us, says the clerk. We grab what supplies we can find and drive back up the mountain. Our first WARM romantic dinner is.......hotdogs and marshmallows, roasted on sticks, over the fire in our cabin. Not gourmet, but somehow very satisfying after a long day of hiking, taking photos, getting lost, and falling more in love.
When it was time to pack up and go back to Oklahoma, we were sorry to leave the mountain, but ready to go start our "regular" life together. We hit the road at a good pace, and were moving along quite nicely, but after a bit we noticed that it was getting cold in the car, but the heater was on...So, we cranked up the heat...and the air came colder still. Then, in a puff of smoke, our Honda's engine died, never to be started again. (Cracked block, blown head gasket.) We were two hundred miles from home. There were no cell phones. I honestly do not remember how we called a tow truck, but what I do remember was sitting between my new husband and "Greasy Bob", the tow truck driver, all the way home from my honeymoon.
That's my story...it's full of ridiculousness, just like a lot of the rest of my life. But, it's also one of the best stories I ever get to tell. :0)