15 May 2007

Oh, what a beautiful morning

This weekend we went to O-O-O-O-Oklahoma where the wind comes sweepin’ down the plain. We camped at Turner Falls, and for those of you who camp, I would suggest trying this area. The front area (more day trippers—I’m just full of songs today) was more commercialized, but the fall itself was magnificent. Swimming areas, a small stretch of sandy beach, and of course, a castle. Why not have a castle in O-K-L-A-H-O-M-A Oklahoma, yeah? Apparently, in the thirties an English professor at Oklahoma University built it modeled on middle ages English castles. It was his summer home. I guess profs made a bunch more back then. The tent camping area is more secluded. We found a spot right on the rushing river. You don’t really see the other campers. And you don’t see any lights except for the stars, which explode in the sky after the sun goes skinny dipping.
Saturday night, after dark, long after dark, a girl appears by our campfire. The guys were off to the side I think cleaning up something, maybe tying up the trash bags because of the raccoons. This girl, with eyes that didn’t focus anywhere just stands there until my friend Patty asks, “Are you okay?” with her South African accent.
“I’m looking for Xena. Is Xena here?” the girl draws in a breath of cancer from her cigarette.
As in the warrior princess?
“No,” Patty says, “Sorry.”
“I must be at the wrong campsite.”
Ya think?
She wanders away with a dim flashlight. The guys return, and we relate the story. Patty’s reaction: I hope she’s okay. If she’s lost, she’ll be lost all night.
My reaction: maybe she’s the Wandering Lady of Turner Falls searching for Xena’s campsite from the 1930s. The castle-professor had fallen in love with her, but she did not return the emotion, and now she’s doomed to search for Xena forever (because Xena saved her from his clutches in the 30s, or course).
My sweet, caring husband, upon seeing her flashlight again, goes out to help her.
Scenario number two: It’s a ploy. A trap. She lures away the men in the camp to torture them. Meanwhile, others come in and kidnap the women and children. I start praying. Please return my sweet, caring husband to me. And I don’t even watch sci-fi. (Although you should have seen my nightmare last night. Bruce Willis was my father, and he was not a good guy.)
Chris returns. What’s the story? we ask.
“She’s stoned,” he starts. We got that. “I asked her where she came from [cotton-eyed Joe, to keep up the songs]. ‘You know that area where you’re not supposed to drive?’ she said.”
We nod. We know.
Chris continues. “‘We drove there.’ I knew exactly where she was cause I saw that truck earlier. She said Xena—not the warrior princess—did you actually ask her that?” Chris asks me. I hadn’t. She must have come up with it all on her own in her drugged stupor. “Xena the Russian-” okay “-was with a group that jump started our car today and now we’re the best of friends and camping together.”
And they probably had a stash of something.
“When we got to this tiny stream, she turned her flashlight off, told me she knew where she was, and didn’t go any further until I had turned around,” Chris says.
I jump in. “So if it was scenario number one with the Wandering Lady of Turner Falls, she knew that anyone who crossed the tiny stream (River Styx?) with her would be doomed to Hades. If scenario number two, then she grew to like you because you were caring and didn’t try any hokey-pokey business and so she decided to let you go and return to the camp unharmed and in time to save us.” Of course, Patty’s husband, Charl, was still there to prevent aforementioned kidnappings.
Rolled eyes on all sides.
So back to the beautiful morning, Lisa Samson started it all, Mary DeMuth emailed me—along with several others—about it, fellow Misfit Michelle participated, and Robin participated then tagged me. Wshoo. That’s a lotta links, folks, especially considering the pic-in-a-post, too. Morning faces. Pure morning. And I took the picture. Second morning of our camping excursion. Pre-coffee. Unwashed hair. The whole business. But, I can’t bring myself to post it. It would take out the intrigue, and I need just a little mystery (for those of you who do know what I look like, just pretend). So here’s me enjoying the falls. Note: hair is unwashed and unfixed and in an awkward growing-out stage. And I rarely wear make-up anyways, so can this count? And pic was still taken pre-coffee.


Erin said...

Hey! Your hair is longer! I like it.

That was a good story- your mind wanders like Anne Shirley's.

willowtree said...

I noticed the longer hair too (and a bit darker methinks).

If God had wanted us to go camping, he wouldn't have given us an appreciation of comfort.

I'm not ignoring the main part of you story, it's just that I've been where the stoner is, so I empathise with her. (I wouldn't have let her in my car, but I would have empathised)

Pamela said...

You look like xena's side kick gabrielle. That's why the stoned-chick was confused.

tranthegirl said...

Hey, I'm going to Turner Falls end of June or beginning of September!

Michelle Pendergrass said...

I love camping!!

And yes, I suppose the picture will do just fine. ;)

Heather said...

thank you, erin - high praise indeed!
and yeah, my hair looks darker with length.
tran - you still hang around these parts?

L.L. Barkat said...

Too funny. I never thought about cheating (I mean, being creative) with this assignment... and taking the photo from the back!

Jeanne Damoff said...

How did I miss this? Great story. I love the way your brain works. (Wonder why . . .)

Jennifer said...

I love camping--especially with friends (liked your second post too). We are meeting my in-laws next weekend camping.

You look way too much like a fitness model in that pic for it to be a "me, first thing in the morning) sort of pic. I do not glam up when we are camping, ever (or much when I'm not camping for that matter).