A Friendly Cabin — Part 1
There’s a small bench outside of the building sheltering me from the rain, above it a window providing a peek inside and next to it the front door. I put my bags down in front of the door and look around. The rain provides a gentle backdrop of noise, aside from the occasional bird chirp, the rain is ever present, a constant orchestra of taps and drips. The noise comes from the forest ground, the fallen leaves, the branches and also the roof of the building where the rock tiles give a deeper and more resonating sound. The bench sits on a concrete slab, the slab outlining the small roof. The house seems to be made from concrete wall bricks. Their shape and size distinct, their texture rough. There’s a slight dark spickle in them that attracts my eye. Smooth dark beads, glistening, even when dry. Too small to find details in their reflection, they are still mesmerizing and it feels as though there’s an infinity hiding inside them. The light bricks provide a pleasant sense of space, it gives room to the forest.
I sit down and watch the camping area in front of me. A fire pit covered in ash and charred bits and pieces of wood. Several larger concrete blocks that appear to be for sitting are placed around the fire pit. The pit and the building itself are in a small depression in the landscape. Everywhere around me the forest goes up. As a result of this, some of the rain is collecting in larger puddles around the fire pit. I imagine the summers are great, though for this weather it doesn’t fit too well. My shoes are muddier than they should be as a result.
Though it’s autumn and the air is cold and wet, the air is also clean and taking in a deep breath feels simply invigorating. I’m waiting for the worst of the rain to fall off my coat and my bags. The rain and the clouds distort and obscure my sense of time. The monotonic gray doesn’t change and sitting there, watching the rain drops endlessly pass by, I’m unsure of how much time actually has passed when I finally snap out of it and decide to knock on the door. The texture of the door is smooth but the door itself is quite hard. It feels familiar, comparable to countertops made from compressed and glued wood chips from a few decades ago.
The door opens, “hey, good to have you, nice you could make some time.” I extend my hand and grab his shoulder. I wanted to hug him, but figured it wasn’t a great idea with the wet coat. Even before I can really respond, he continues, “your place is right here, just follow me.” The walls inside are also simply those white concrete bricks. The floor is an indistinct brown carpet clearly made to deal with dirt and moisture and the grime of being in the forest. The rooms in the side are wood paneling, dark brown with a thick layer of paint to protect it from the elements. The hallway is small and cozy, I can exactly fit past the coat rack with my bags. A small hallway leads to a room at the end, a door, again brown and I enter a small room. A window watching the trees outside is opened just a bit to provide some fresh air.
My friend closes the window and I just say “thanks.” My friend turns around again, “glad you could make it, I really appreciate having you here.” My breath still a bit shallow lugging the bags, I answer, “yeah absolutely, you asked and I gladly obliged.” He smiles, “I’ll see you in a bit then, barbecue is off the table but we have a great soup.” He leaves and I put my bags down, attempting to make as little as possible wet. There’s a small wardrobe and I pack my things in there, a small sink hosts my toothbrush. Then my coat deserves a spot on the coat rack. I take a seat on the bed sheets, cover and a white comforter. An additional plaid blanket with a red and black pattern, it already makes me itch just looking at it. I sit and watch outside and slowly it does appear to be getting darker. But the rain doesn’t relent.
I join my friends in a living room of sorts. Large wooden chairs and a big wooden couch. This cabin feels as though it’s been stuck in the 90s, the distinct style brings back memories of trips with family and scouting and school and how so many of these cabins just felt exactly the same. Even the light, 2 bulbs barely enough to show the colors in the room. Though to be fair, there wasn’t much color to begin with. I descended on the couch, I certainly couldn’t call it “sitting”, as the couch seemed to go lower and lower and deeper and deeper. It made me feel small, like I was 14 again. A small ceramic cooker in a kitchen corner sported a big pan of soup. Thick heavy pea soup, the perfect dish for this rainy day and exactly what we needed paired with heavy rye bread. Big bottles of cheap soda complete the scene and with it my memories. We talked about times past and times we honestly barely could remember. But that evening we laughed about jokes and stories with an innocence that only made sense back when we were teenagers.