As you may recall from last summer, my family has a small cabin in the mountains of Colorado. After visiting it last summer, Jeb and I decided that we were going to become “ColoRats.” Nothing is more peaceful than a cabin in the middle of nowhere with no internet or cell reception. True to our word, we upgraded to an SUV and spent Memorial Day weekend opening the cabin. I know this sounds like a vacation, but in reality, it is a lot of work. At the end of each summer, the water has to be drained and the pump removed, the ashes hauled out of the stove, everything has to be cleaned and the cabin itself is boarded up because for the next nine months it will literally be covered in snow.
This year, we offered to meet Jeb’s brother and sister-in-law there to get it ready for the season. After 17 hours in the car with two Maligators, we arrived about 8:30 Thursday evening. We didn’t have water yet, but that was OK because that was on Friday’s agenda. So, we fired up the stove and after about 30 minutes had our own toasty little oasis. Much to my amazement, it only took the guys about four hours the next day to get the water up and running. All was going so well, I decided to take a nap on the couch ... that was about the time everyone started smelling gas. After letting the place air out for an hour or so and contemplating our options, we decided that no one among us was qualified to locate/fix a gas leak and that hot water wasn’t super important, so the gas would be off for the remainder of the trip.
Now, when it comes to girly things, I lie somewhere between princess and tomboy. I enjoy outdoorsy things, but I also like a hot shower and warm bed — at least I had a warm bed. And if you are wondering how cold the water could possible be, note that it comes straight out of a spring in the Colorado Rockies, so pretty darn cold. Otherwise it was a great trip. We got lots of work done and had a blast.
For me, the best part was sitting around the fire listening to a family of veterans swap stories on Memorial Day weekend. I’ll admit that it is a lot of acronyms I don’t understand and who has better food, the Navy or the Air Force, but it was a great reminder of why the rest of us get a three-day weekend. I think it can be really easy to forget that Memorial Day is more than just an extra day to hang by the pool, but a day we should all stop and remember the men and women who have given their lives for our freedoms, our way of life. Suddenly, not having hot water doesn’t seem like such a big deal.