We have a new record for coldest night spent in the Treehouse. Julian and Carina came up from Boston during their semester break from Emerson College, where they’re both sophomores. Even though we warned them about the cold and the snowy roads, they braved the mountain curves and hills in Julian’s clunker of a car. He was celebrating his 20th birthday and told us he was born on the coldest day of the year. He seems to be a record breaker where cold is concerned.
Julian managed to get his “wonky” auto to the bottom of our driveway where H met them and led them down to the Lincoln Library parking lot to leave their car. It took a while to transfer suitcases and several bags of their groceries into the my Subaru for the trip up our steep driveway. Obviously they weren’t planning on traveling for the next couple of days.
Carina turned nineteen in December but seems much older. The New Yorker is majoring in photography at Emerson, where she and Julian met. A tall lanky blonde with waist-length waves and pale blue eyes, Carina is a natural beauty. Julian’s dark good looks come from his Chilean mother and German father. “I’m first generation American,” he says.
Tuesday evening they took over the kitchen and made themselves a pasta dinner. By the time they went for a soak in the hot tub, the temperature had dipped to minus ten. They dashed to the cozy Treehouse and cranked up the heat for a night that flirted with minus twenty.
In the morning we brought a little heater into the dining room to help the radiant floor warm things up. We were all glad to see the sun shining on Mt. Abe and the thermometer rise into the twenties. In spite of the cold, these two youngsters made sandwiches and hiked toward the mountain. The snow was too deep to go very far up the slope, but they took in the vistas of horse pastures and frozen ponds before returning to Fern Forest.
On Wednesday we made dinner together—pasta again—with Julian at the skillet. Over wine we got to know them. Carina lives in Mamaroneck with her mom and dad, a Wall Street banker who builds dories and kayaks and plays around with banjo, guitar and mandolin. She talked about photography and how lighting can make or break a model while she flipped through my issue of Detail with Johnny Depp on the cover (we obviously have similar tastes). Julian is a sound technology major and specializes in electronic music he composes on his computer. He has posted several pieces and tutorials on YouTube under “Beeza” (see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9_DvI5GQXc). Last year a movie producer contacted him about using his music in a trailer for the film Pacific Rim, and Julian accepted. Check out the trailer at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5guMumPFBag. He also DJs with his music and adapts other recorded songs by adding electronic sounds.
Oh, and he’s also a great cook. We love guests who make themselves at home, as these two did. They clear the table and clean up after themselves. And they’re hardy enough not to mind a frigid Vermont night. H and I consider it an honor to get to know bright, creative people like Carina and Julian. In spite of all the doom and gloom we see online and in the media about the future, we’re inspired to believe there’s a glimmer of hope with young folks like these among us.