Monday, July 16, 2007

What a long... strange... trip... Armed and Dangerous II - the return of Scarlett

I am back. I am not awake, I am sleeptyping... but I am back. The Armoire Saga continues.

After having made a sizzling deal with a rental car company for a pick-up truck to haul the Armoire back to Denver in, I beg a dear friend, one Robert the Bruce, to come along and he agreed. God bless him and his clan forever. To call Friday afternoon chaotic would be an understatement. I get the sainted lady of South Jordan (Utah) to agree to meet me at the storage facility on her day off so that I can pick it up. Changed my plans, reserved the truck, got the friend, meeting the lady. I ran some imperative errands after work and dashed like mad to make it to the rental car company before they closed at 6. I arrived at 10 to six, yay me.

They search and search. No reservation. They call around to their other shops. Nothing.
It is 5:59 when I realize that I went to the wrong rental car company.

I dash out with an embarrassed smile and wave and get to the right one (Budget - shameless plug), at 6:02 but they are closed. Not a soul in sight. No surprise, I have the same uncanny ability to vaporize at closing time on Friday.

New plan.

I now have to leave Saturday morning. I will miss the family reunion. I will miss staying the night in Glenwood Springs with my dearest mermaid and her mermaid daughter at the cabins.
Saturday, bright and very early we are at Budget. 'That's so weird' the guy says. 'We're always here till about 6:15 on Fridays, we just got out early yesterday for some reason.' Of course they did. Have I mentioned that my life is a study in irony? It is. I am blood related to Murphy too... I think, but he was at the reunion and I wasn't.

We get the truck. It has 4 doors and a short bed. Good Lord I hope that armoire (which I only saw a small thumbnail photo of) fits in the truck.

We drive 500 miles (almost exactly) to the storage place, and Sainted Lady is there with Mr. Sainted. She has dragged her husband along to enlist his help in the loading of the beast. I say beast because she opened the door to the unit... and at the sight of all seven feet of it, I almost fell over in shock. And heat. It was 175 degrees.

The beautiful Beast. Note that it is almost as tall as the doorway behind it that is three steps up from the ground. It is inconceivably heavy.

Robert the Bruce looks at Mr. Sainted and they both sigh and start heaving and shoving the beast toward the truck. The bed is much too short. Tailgate down. I brought rope, thank the Lord. After much work and near death, the beast is loaded into the truck. Mrs. Sainted Lady looks at me and says (as we are standing amidst a museum of miscellaneous items in the storage unit)... 'do you want this Santa? I'll give him to you right now for ten bucks.' It is July and I am looking at a large Christmas decoration.

Santa is a mountain Santa. Furry fur coat, skis, snow shoes, canoe, the works. He's ready for winter in the Rockies. He's not little either. 3.5 feet. Yah whatever, I'm here, we'll put him in the truck.

I hug Sainted Lady in utter gratitude and we drive to the gate, where my Wonder Aunt, Worlds Best Uncle and Fun Cousins will meet us. We follow them 20 miles down the road to their home, they take us to a wonderful dinner at a secret hideaway and then make banana splits for us to enjoy on their back deck under the new chandelier.

Worlds Best Uncle made the chandelier, it is constructed of a ladder that Wonder Aunt used to climb on as a child, metal buckets, and those little hockey puck under cabinet lights. They have it hanging from the rafters of the covered deck with bailing wire... it is the best deck chandelier I have ever seen.

Wonder Aunt and Worlds Best Uncle are extremely talented at practically everything and they are quite clever. Robert the Bruce and I have begun to wonder if we shouldn't leave the beautiful beast Armoire to Worlds Best Uncle and Wonder Aunt because they are whizzes at refinishing, refurbishing, reupholstering... and everything, and they could probably make this beast Armoire look better than it ever did, and they'd thoroughly enjoy doing that. I discuss the idea with Worlds Best Uncle, he is shocked that I would not keep it... what am I going to do with it? I ask. I forgot that I even bid on it in the first place, and it will take a team of 20 pack mules and two oxen to haul the dang thing into my place anyway.

They agree to keep it. I have just rented a truck and dragged a friend 500 miles from home (one way) on an 8 hour drive, watched him and a sainted stranger hoist a 10,000 lb monster into the truck only to drive it 20 miles down the road and unload it. We will be going home without it. It's ok. I still have Santa.

We stay the night and in the morning after a lovely breakfast of cereal and fresh peaches off of the almond tree, Robert the Bruce and I head back to Denver with Santa. We drove through several small towns along the way and decided to stop in one to stare at everyone and eat ice cream. It seems that this is what the locals do, so we thought we'd check it out.


Hot dogs and ice cream anybody?

City hall

State Liquor Agency (on Main Street)

Ye Olde Theatre... currently playing Harry Potter

We leave smallville after this brief visit, and a couple of quick photos on an old rusted tractor. We are off again. We talk to my mermaid in Glenwood and she agrees a BBQ is in order. We stop at the cabins in the mountains on our way home to indulge in natures best and one of my dearest friends company, and we discover that this place is the ideal home for Santa. He fits in here like a hand in glove. And truth be known, looks like several of the local men.

While here, we see the longest enduring rainbow I have ever seen in my life... over 30 minutes. I plucked the largest dried up dandelion EVER ~ the kind with the little helicopters all over it that when blown into the wind will give you a wish... and gave it to the mermaids, along with the Santa, and after a nice relaxing visit there, we head back to Denver.

En Route we see an old fire truck from the Idyllwild Fire Dept. and I cannot resist keeping a photo of this!

We made it back safely, and very early in the morning. With only the rental truck keys in our hands, but with a fun, crazy, memorable and wonderful weekend in our back pockets. Everything wound up where it should have been.

My sincere thanks to:

Sainted Lady and Mr. Sainted

Robert the Bruce

World's Best Uncle and Wonder Aunt

Mermaids both

Budget rentals

With a promise not to be so silly for at least a little while...

Scarlett & Viaggiatore (who laughed all the way, and loved the friends and family)


Remiman said...

What an awsome trip, and I see that you are a slave to serendipity! Arising to the situation, moment to moment....what a talent that is.
You came home without an accumulation of things, but something ever more precious...Memories of a wonderful adventure.

Anonymous said...

Oh Scarlett what a wonderful story of making everything work out for the best! I agree with remiman, you are a "slave to serendipity." Enjoy your new piece of furniture.

apprentice said...

Yay you girl. I love the randomness of the whole trip. Spontinaiety Rules which is just as life should be.

Your aunt's chandelier is great. I'd love to see small town America, though I doubt it differs from small town anywhere else -watching paint dry seems to be a major preoccupation, which is no bad thing.

I love the lyrics to Mary Chapin Carpenter's I am a town.

sognatrice said...

Well *that* certainly didn't disappoint. Sounds strange to say this sounds just like something that would happen to me, but....

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic trip you have wonderful friends and family as well(!) but you are obviously as mad as a hatter...

Jon M said...

An adventure and a half and three quarters besides! Now you MUST step in to the looks like there might be another world in there! :-)

MyUtopia said...

The armoire is incredible.

gautami tripathy said...

I can't move around with Leola. She refuses to part with here brood!

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


I AM a slave to serendipity! I have that dip part down just right!
We did come away from it all with great memories and laughs. And a good story.


Most of the time things do work out for the best. I'll enjoy the furniture when I visit Wonder Aunt and World's Best Uncle, as it will remain with them heretoforward.


It would have made the smalltown visit perfect if there'd been paint drying... it was just -this much- more exciting than that. Kind of. The ice cream shake was good though. Cookie dough flavored.


So glad you weren't disappointed! You know, I don't go looking for these things, they just happen.
A lot.
Sounds like I'm in good company!


I am mad as a hatter, that much is painfully true. But it's a lot of fun!


I think I stepped OUT of the armoire... or something... yikes!


It is very beautiful, the doors (which are difficult to see) are rounded, and when opened, they have the same gold design on the inside as there is on the outside. It's beautiful!
Good thing my family loved it so much!


It's probably best that way. I had some explaining to do about Viaggiatore.

Best to all,

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

What a wonderful trip and you came back with great pictures, beautiful memories and ideas for your own chandelier. What more could a girl ask for!? :-)
Brilliant story, beautifully told.

L.M.Noonan said...

That armoire is to die for and I'm definately going to make a bucket lightfitting. best of all is your tale and photographs of an America we (ozzies) hardly ever see. My favourite is the old cinema showing harry Potter.


I like the fact that your profile says so much about you...not everyone has that. I think that your profile has even more in it than mine does. :-)

I am impressed.

exskindiver said...

your efforts and then your generosity
tells me that you must be a nice person.
i agree that you told the story well--not at all like someone telling the story about the day they watched paint dry.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


Thank you much.
Now then... what more could a girl ask for (licks end of pencil and gets to serious work):

1. World Peace
2. Never to need to shave again
3. My own shiny red fire truck with free parking everywhere for life
4.... I'm going to run out of room here, I think.


Funny, yah small town America is a topic that came up on the way home, and the armoire almost was to die for, but thankfully Robert the Bruce made it through, heroically.


One of my friends said that it is TOO detailed and I need to cut it back. Glad you like it!

Chesca! Hee hee...

Girl, if I was watching paint dry on my shiny new red fire truck, then that wouldn't be so bad at ALL!

Scarlett & Viaggiatore

heartinsanfrancisco said...

What a great adventure!

What will you purchase next on eBay?

Dewey said...

I was wondering how this turned out! I knew it would be quite an adventure.

Wanderlust Scarlett said...


I haven't actually ever bought anything on Ebay, this was another place.
I don't mind surfing at Ebay though...


It was quite an adventure.

Scarlett & Viaggiatore