Thursday, January 19

cowboys, indians, and carbonated pinot noir

It still feels very strange to be a girlfriend. Like I've stepped onto some foreign plane, where everyone else at the party seems to be perfectly at ease, greeting me with a cocktail and a congratulations. They seem happy to have me. But I can still feel the me before I came to couples' island. She seems a bit put out and confused, phantom paining like an amputated limb.

Or maybe I'm over-thinking this.

Pyromaniac's fix
Obviously I am, because I haven't been thinking about my blog much at all. Sitting down today, I have no idea what to say––much like whenever someone asks me how my weekend was and suddenly I can't even remember my own name. 

But speaking of Mountain Man, the first order of business is a name change. We tried this one on for size, but it didn't quite fit, like many of the shirts in his closet.

"I like the post, it just sounds weird to be called a 'man,'" he said. 

"But you are a man," I protest, though I am well aware most men stop maturing at the age of sixteen.

But it's true, MM is more of a guy. Man conjures up images of John Wayne in a cowboy hat and chaps after a long cinematic cattle drive. Mountain Man is way too goofy and playful to keep up with that image. He wears an orange baseball cap and parachute pants like Bear Grylls––in fact, they are Bear Grylls' pants, shipped from the U.K.

So, he's a Mountain Guy. And it's a good thing because if I was dating The Duke, I'm pretty sure I would never stop laughing at the most inopportune moments; like when he tells me there's been an Indian raid on the other side of the mountain and I'd better stay inside and tend the fire while he goes to rescue the women and children from certain scalpings.

Speaking of tending fires, I spent a majority of the weekend at MG's mountain lodge, laying on a bearskin rug in front of an open fire, accompanied by a tame wolf and mountain lion cub. At least that's how I imagined it.

When I told MG that one of my fantasies was laying on a bearskin rug with a hunky dude in front of a fire, he laughed and said, "That's so cliché."

I decided not to tell him that I would also have a glass of pinot noir in my hand. 

In reality, MG's 'lodge' sits near the end of a dirt lane with quite a bit of melting snow at the moment. In order to navigate said lane, one must embark on a perilous drive akin to some video games I've attempted (not successfully) to master.

Reality is kinder to me. When driving muddy dirt roads, speed is key so as not to get stuck in a sinking hole, combined with good judgement about which side of the road will best support your weight, and more than a hint of good old-fashioned chance-taking. The first time I attempted this feat, MG stood watching from his garage. Bastard. 

New flame
But after a couple days of this, it was becoming old hat. I started remembering another dirt road, from my childhood, which required similar navigational skills. I even started veering crossways over the muddy ruts in a lazy attempt to even things out, as my little Mazda became muddier and muddier.

And I really did sleep next to an open fire, guarded by Ivan the husky and a slightly potbellied cat called Mystery. I think the mystery is how a cat with such a saggy tummy can sprint up the stairs with such agility.

But there was no pinot noir, unless you count the carbonated stuff in the fridge; no bearskin rug as that might compromise MG's PETA sympathies; and no hunky man sleeping next to me, unless you count Ivan, who is so large he has to back out of small spaces because he can't (or won't) turn around.

Mountain Guy worked the night away grooming snow-covered slopes not so far away. And I dreamed about living in a place where crackling logs get to be mundane.

In the morning, MG comes in the door, wraps his arms around me with a kiss, and says, "I could get used to this."

And that's what I did last weekend. All in all, not a bad trade for phantom pains of lost singlehood.