Note From Jon


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Top o' the Mutton

Spending the night without electricity or indoor plumbing may not be a typical New Year’s Eve… but I hope it becomes one. Kevin secured Mutton Top Cabin for our friends to welcome 2008 and, while I did break the low-key dress code, I think it was exactly the New Year’s everyone was looking for.

The trip began with a detour to Big Al’s Tavern near Stanardsville (which Jeff correctly pronounces STAN-erds-ville) to watch the Redskins advance to the playoffs. We sacrificed for our loyalty though when the access gate was locked, leading to a fully laden half-mile uphill hike in the dark and the rain (I had anticipated this though and safely waterproofed my tuxedo’s garment bag).

We dried off over a salacious game of Bag o’ Nouns (which involves three rounds of guessing the same words in the styles of catchphrase, password, and finally charades). Some highlights of each round included a debate over whether “quattro” was a valid word for explaining “foursome”, “heterosexual” as the password for the noun “Darren Biggs”, and that it helps to have Jan Louis around if the word is “hog fat”.

After waking up to the panorama of hills humping up like whales through the cloud-filled valley, Linny picked out a short water-filled hike off of Skyline Drive that would get us back in time for her to prepare her trademark pho for lunch (tuxedos and pho, probably two things that have never been in Mutton Top before). While the Brown’s Gap->Doyle’s Run Trail->AT loop turned out to be a couple miles longer and farther down the drive than expected, we still got back before the lunch crowd mutinied, and everyone agreed Linny’s pho was worth the wait (though there was some disagreement on how it should be pronounced…).

I spent the early evening sawing and splitting firewood before contributing potatoes and asparagus for dinner. We gathered around Sarah’s crotch-warming bonfire, and then after dinner AB and I changed into our ironic attire for the rustic festivities. While we failed to go through with some of the photo ops we’d discussed (prom pictures with the outhouse as the background, and before and after photos of the-outhouse-as-supermans-phone-booth) it was nostalgic standing in front of Joel’s 2008 banner with about six cameras trained on us as our eyes darted from one to another trying to guess which would go off next.

We timed our countdown off of a consensus of cell phones and satellite-synced GPS clocks (which spent most of their time searching for signals). In the revelry I managed to get four New Year’s kisses which I believe is a record for me and hopefully bodes well for my New Year’s resolution of more nookie in 2008 (though, while fun, various photographic reenactments and the Alexandwich don’t technically count).

As they roll in, I will link to my friend’s photos and accounts. Including for the first time ever Dave's photos! In my opinion he got the best ones, and he came up with some damn funny captions for them as well...

Thanks to everyone who worked so hard setting up this trip and doing all the necessary chores during it (and of course to PATC and all the volunteers for making this possible). Happy New Year everyone and here’s to 2008!


Jan Louis said...

4 Kisses you got? Wow starting early on your New Years Resolution indeed, condsidering that all I got was an eye patch..... Good Times indeed! (except for that "hogfat" thing!)

Alison said...

Those photos are a total hoot. Kudos on an unconventional NYE. :-)

Rocky said...

Happy New Year all! Hope to see you before I move to SF.