Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Rocky Mountain High

I woke up at two o'clock this morning. I was freezing, and achy, and my head hurt. And it was only two in the morning, and there was no warm, painkilling blanket wherein to wrap myself. I lay there, in the cold dark, thinking "Is there no Balm in Gilead?"

Not really. I lay there in the dark thinking "Let's pack up this crappy camp and go home, for the love of all that's holy!"

So, I tossed and turned, and I chastised myself for breaking my number one rule in life: never go to family reunions. And then my son woke up, and wanted a bottle, and I made him one, but, like I said, it was freezing, and the water was cold, and it's not like I had a microwave right there in my tent, and so my son cried and cried and cried, and my wife and I cried and cried and cried.

Folly #1: I went to a family reunion.

Folly #2: I went to a family reunion, right up the canyon from Salt Lake, so every day I come in to work, and every night I go back up to camp. This means that, after being awake since two, I drive home, take a groggy shower, and go to work. And then I head straight from work back up the canyon, just in time to eat dinner and get the kids ready for bed -- and then lie in my tent, wide awake, all night long.

All in all, I suppose I can't complain. Due to insufficient funds we canceled my wife's family reunion. (Well, we didn't cancel her family reunion -- would that I had that kind of authority! Instead, we just canceled our attendance at the reunion.) It's the first time I've been grateful for being poor.

The thing is, her reunion is up in Oregon, but not in the pretty green part of Oregon, but in the ugly, Idaho part of Oregon: a tiny little town called Union, out in the middle of nowhere. (My apologies to anyone from either the ugly part of Idaho or Oregon: I'm sorry, but it's not like I'm forcing you to live there. You can't really blame this on me.)

Interesting trivia: I was once banned from Union, Oregon. I used to be able to say I'd never been banned from a city, on penalty of imprisonment, but no longer. (Now I have a small taste of what it must be like to be Kerry Blair.)

Anyway, before I'd ever been to Oregon, my wife used to describe the place to me, and it sounded really pretty, and she talked about this beautiful mountain lodge where we'd sleep, and how rad it was. And then we went, and it wasn't nearly as scenic, and the lodge wasn't exactly the Ritz Carlton, and my wife got attacked in the middle of the night by a squirrel. However, it was dark, and we can't be sure it was a squirrel. To hear her tell the story, you'd think it was a vampiric raccoon, or something. It was awfully frightening. (I didn't sleep there, either.) (Crappy reunions.)

So, in a few hours I'm headed back up the mountain. I'm stocking up on extra blankets and one of those chemical heater things for the baby's bottle. Even so, I'm not optimistic. At the end of this week-long camping trip, I'm going to need a vacation.


At 8/08/2006 5:51 PM, Blogger FHL said...

So, how'd you manage to get banned from Union? Did you make up a parody song, perhaps to the tune of Union of the Snake by Duran Duran?

Or did you just have a bunch of unpaid parking tickets?

At 8/08/2006 6:17 PM, Blogger Mean Aunt said...


Our family reunions are a hoot. Of course you aren't related so you don't attend. But if you were there we'd probably send you to time-out for crabbiness.

Now go take a nap.

At 8/09/2006 10:21 AM, Blogger RobisonWells said...

Mean Aunt: your comment smacks of something an old person would say. Not that I'm implying such. Just sayin'.

FHL: the story isn't nearly as interesting, which is why I didn't tell it. If I say I got banned, then people imagine it was because I got drunk and dressed up as the town mascot and climbed up the spire of city hall, shouting obscenities. That'd be rad.

The real story, sadly, is that I got pulled over for speeding, but didn't have my insurance card with me. The cop (the only cop in the entire town, from what I understand) told me that it was their law to impound the car and arrest me, but because I had a baby with me, they wouldn't. But, he said, I needed to have the card faxed to me from the insurance company, and he'd pull me over the next time he saw me, to make sure I'd done it. Well, it was the middle of stinking nowhere, and where was I to get a fax machine? So, I stayed outside of city limits for the rest of the reunion.

At 8/09/2006 11:10 AM, Blogger Bryan Hickman said...

Hey, Rob, great story about the reunion (note the sarcasm). But, what exactly does it have to do with writing LDS Fiction.

I can't speak for your other "readers," but I come to this insight for inspiration and advice, not to hear your inane ramblings about botched family gatherings. Just sayin'.

At 8/09/2006 11:32 AM, Blogger RobisonWells said...

Why won't people leave me alone?

At 8/09/2006 1:56 PM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

People come here for inspiration and advice? Oh my heck. I've got to get a guest blogger to stand in for me this week for sure!

And, just for the record, not only have I never been banned from anywhere, I ALWAYS carry my car insurance card...and my temple recommend...and I wear my CTR ring along with the pin I got for perfect attendance in Sunday School at the Methodist Church in 1964. (In other words, I've been "being good" since before Rob was born.) I was also going to mention the "Good DO-BEE" sticker Miss Laura sent me when I was three, but I guess I've already put Rob sufficiently in his place. (Which is probably somewhere just this side of perdition.)

At 8/09/2006 3:28 PM, Blogger Mean Aunt said...

Ahh, Rob--you little devil. Consider you cheeks pinched by a mean aunt.


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