Back to Nature – Part One

The wiper blades squealed across the windshield of their car. They didn’t have much choice when they landed at the airport following their 6-hour flight; at least it had four wheels, but not much more. The rain poured as they wound through the winding roads of the mountains. Finally, they arrived at the campgrounds, and a small break in the rain allowed them to check in with the main office.

Suzy was relieved they had booked a cabin instead of roughing it in a tent for the trip. With the keys in hand, they found their way to cabin 17, located on a roundabout. Inside the roundabout was a circle of chairs around a firepit. It looked to be a nice place to relax during their stay.

Rich parked the car and they hopped out and ran for the front entry, trying to avoid the raindrops. Suzy put the key into the lock, but it wouldn’t unlock. She looked at the keys, and frowned as she turned to Rich. “They gave us the keys to Cabin 11. Are you sure it’s supposed to be 17?”

Rich smiled, and emphatically said yes. He pulled out his cellphone, but couldn’t get a signal to call the office. “Wait here, I’ll go get this straightened out.”

Suzy smiled and kissed him on the cheek before he headed back to the car. “Don’t be long, it’s a little chilly.” She took a seat on one of the Adirondack chairs, rubbing her arms to keep warm, and let out a sigh as the rental car pulled away.

She looked out over the circle of cabins. Cabin 11 was just across the way. She laughed, thinking to herself that they probably are in 11 anyway. But, she stayed put.

Families and couples came through the area, donning various rain gear. Many were enjoying the sprinkling sky instead of avoiding the raindrops. Suzy watched a mother and child walking up the road, the little girl jumping in every puddle as they walked by. Suzy just smiled to herself over the scene.

Then, a man in a rain jacket turned the corner and started climbing up the stairs to the cabin where she sat without looking up.

Suzy spoke up, “Excuse me. Is this your cabin?”

He looked up at her, a shocked look came across his face as he removed the hood from his head.

She saw his face and froze, then stumbled over her own words. “Wow! Hi Steve. What are you doing here?”

Steve stared at her, hard to believe she was standing in front of him. “Well, we’re here on vacation. This is our cabin. How did you…”

Suzy interrupted him. “Rich apparently got our cabin number wrong. He thought we were in 17. He’s back at the office straightening it out.”

Suzy was visibly upset. She didn’t expect to run into Steve here. “Mind if I wait here out of the rain until he gets back? Then we’ll be off to the right cabin.”

“Sure, no problem. I have to get some things for the girls.” With that, Steve headed into the cabin, closing the door behind.

Suzy bit her fingernails. She wasn’t even a nail biter. She wasn’t ready to see Steve even after all these years. She paced back and forth on the porch, waiting for the rain to lift, or Rich to come back, or both. She wanted off that porch as quickly as possible. Finally, she saw the rental car round the corner. She made a beeline for the car, climbing in.

Rich looked at her. He realized she was shaken. “What’s wrong?”

She calmed herself. “Cabin 17 has other guests. Which cabin are we in?”

Rich didn’t believe that would cause her to be upset; he stared at her.

“I had a run in with one of them. Just,” she paused, “Just, let’s get to our cabin.”

Rich continued around the roundabout. They were in a cabin directly opposite from 17, in cabin 11. “Sorry I got the cabin number wrong. Are you going to be okay?”

Suzy wiped the rain off her cheek. “Yeah, I’ll be fine. We just should avoid the folks in 17, okay?”

Rich looked at her. “Do we know them?”

Suzy’s shoulders drooped. “I do.”

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