Ever have one of those days that is so perfect you hope to remember it your whole life?
On Friday, we spent the day driving south, sitting in traffic, drinking cold brews at Blue Mountain Brewery, and eventually arriving at Luminhaus.
On Saturday, we woke up to this:
We also woke up to no electricity. And in the woods, when you're on well water, no electricity also means no water. And when you're staying in the mountains, there's no cell reception. What to do, what to do? We had been looking forward to a hot breakfast and a hot shower, neither of which were possible without electricity. And being in such a remote area, we wondered if anyone would ever notice that the power was out and decide to fix it.
We pondered our dilemma, feared the whole weekend would be ruined, and then decided to get dressed and head down the mountain in search of a meal and a telephone. As we were heading out the door, the power came back on! Hooray! So we whipped up some egg sandwiches, and then headed out to take a hike in the George Washington National Forest in an area we'd read about in a guide book: Mount Pleasant.
Larry reading the guidebook.
We were looking to hike about three miles. We started on the trail and it was fantastic - perfectly flat (good for gimps like me!), and through beautiful lush green woods. We didn't see anyone else on the trail - it was so peaceful. But gradually, the trail got steeper and rockier until we were huffing and puffing a bit.
Fungi (with Daddy Longlegs):
We hiked for quite a while and not knowing if there was any payoff at the end, had decided to turn around. That was when we saw a sign that proclaimed Summit - 0.5 miles. We couldn't hike that far and not make it to the summit! So we trudged climbed on (it was getting steep!). And let me tell you, that last "half mile" was a heck of a lot longer than half a mile!
But it was totally worth it. The summit? Was a breathtaking panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains:
These were not taken from an airplane!
I could have sat up there for the rest of the day - it really made me realize how stunning this part of Virginia is.
After resting on the warm rocks, we headed back.
(My apologies for blinding you with my pasty white flesh.)
Our three mile hike had turned into a seven miler and we were exhausted by the time we reached the car. Exhausted in a good way, though - I definitely felt the endorphin surge. And hiking to the summit of Mount Pleasant is definitely one of our new favorite hikes.
We went back to Luminhaus and got those hot showers we had missed that morning, then cracked open some wine and started grilling dinner (him) and baking a cake (me). We ate outside and sat until I got freaked out by Mothra II flapping its wings in the dark. Ewww.
We brought the bottle of wine that I had given Larry for his 40th Birthday and toasted the Roogle.
And then we had cake. I just had to make him a cake to make up for not making him one on his actual birthday. The recipe was for Billowing Strawberry Poppyseed Layer Cake, and it was accompanied by a beautiful photo. My cake was not beautiful. In fact, it was the worst looking cake I have ever made.
I called it Ugly Cake.
(Note the gaping wound.)
But I stuck 40 candles in it anyway, oh yes I did!
Seriously, the frosting was delicious (cream cheese frosting mixed with whipped cream), but it was like icing a cake with melted ice cream. Strawberries started oozing out the sides. It looked like a crime scene.
But who cares what the cake looked like when your day including waking up in Luminhaus, hiking to the summit of a mountain to enjoy a view of the Blue Ridge Mountains, and sharing wine and a meal in the woods with the one you love? Perfection.
I hope I never forget this day!