The next morning was wine-slow and blinky, but we ate breakfast and I packed to leave. The plan was to head to New Hampshire and stop at an amazing wine store Wyn had talked about where you could get free Ch. Haut Marbuzet and we looked at maps and drank coffee quietly, weary of the previous evening's celebration. It was time to leave Wyn and Shawna's lovely home and company and head south, toward Woodstock, then home, but I had a day to kill before Woodstock.
I got in the car and drove down the hill, the gravel drive, and at the end of it, I made a financial call and decided not to go to New Hampshire. Decided to head back toward Bennington where I had spotted a motel that boasted of $35 rooms, and it was near enough to Bennington to explore the town a little more and to enjoy hiking and the view of the small lake across the road. Cash only. I liked the guy that owned the place, his hat and his moustache. "Cash only," he said, but he let me go into town to get some.
The hike lacked the beauty or views of the hike up Hogback, but it was exercise and I needed that. I stepped in mud. Later I went into town for coffee and people were gathering. A woman was chatting familiarly to several people and then she announced that she would read poetry, so I stayed in solidarity. She even read a few about central California, where I'd moved to Georgia from. Spring wildflowers and I even heard her say "Oxnard." I smiled, thought of Jackson Wheeler. She read about it as though the coastal mountains were exotic and amazing. It is. They are, but if you live there, Vermont is exotic and infinitely greener and the towns are small and Vermont seemed a liberal paradise.
I applauded the poet's efforts and went searching for something to cook in the room that night for dinner, found a nice grocery store with decent wine selection and purchased a few things for dinner, naan and a good Spanish wine and cheese and headed back out of town to make dinner (naan pan pizza and pasta and salad) and enjoy the spartan room. It had the same shower my house in Georgia had when I bought it, something plastic and cheap, suitable for summer camp. I smiled at that. It was a quiet place, a quiet night. I sipped a little of the Spanish and thought about Woodstock, about seeing Amy.