I'm ever amazed when couples book the treehouse knowing the temps will dip into the twenties. While I was in Louisville at Spalding's MFA in Writing residency, H hosted Mike and Ivania. Mike is from Minnesota and Ivania is San Salvadorian, and they met in Korea, where they taught English. They had just landed stateside and were looking for a bit of adventure before figuring out the next path to take. They arrived around dinner time on Thursday, which meant H had to miss hockey night with the guys. Mike felt so bad that he and Ivania took him out to dinner at the Bobcat. They slept soundly in the treehouse and in the morning Ivania padded up the forest trail in slippers and pajamas, her sleeping mask dangling around her neck. She helped H serve the continental breakfast, and afterward they cleaned up the dishes together.
The second night was colder, and the couple hung out in the guest room until the wee hours before heading out to the treehouse with flashlights. H said they were very sweet. It was his first time hosting solo, and John wrote that he and Ivania "had a fantastic time in the treehouse" and really enjoyed H's company. "We managed not only to climb a nearby mountain on a beautiful November afternoon but also visited three of H's personal favorite restaurants in nearby Bristol. Great conversation, hospitality, breakfast." H says Ivania was so impressed by breakfast that she took a picture of it. They left Lincoln for New York City and then planned to go on to see Mike's family in Minnesota, but I have a feeling the Fern Forest Treehouse will hold a special corner of their hearts.
John and Amber are two of the bravest people we've ever met. They drove up from New York, where John coaches cross country at St. John's and Amber is a casting assistant at Princeton's McCarter Theatre, and arrived in the thick of a fierce nor'easter. After dinner at the Bobcat, they settled into the creaking and rocking treehouse with moaning wind and pounding rain. John kept thinking about H's promise that the treehouse was secure, and Amber slept through the torrent. In the morning they drank an entire carafe of coffee and huddled by the wood stove.
The following day they visited Burlington and had dinner in Warren at FlatBread, where Amber's father is friends with the owners. They returned with two growlers of Magic Hat, which we helped them finish off, and topped off the evening with leftover pumpkin pie and great conversation about best and worst movies we've seen. Luckily the next night was quiet and they were rested enough for a jaunt up Mt. Abe before they climbed into the car for the trip back to NYC. I have a feeling we'll see these two adorable people again...at least I hope so.
Someone just wrote to ask if she and her boyfriend can rent the treehouse for four months. Four months? Straight? I'm exhausted just thinking about it. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go do a load of sheets and towels.