I have written before about the many virtues of Berry College. Tonight, as BFF Jen and I were making plans for yet another Mountain Day adventure, a story popped into my head that I realized I had been remiss in sharing with all eight of my fans. So enjoy:
A few years ago, BFF Jen and I decided to go visit Berry – but not for Mountain Day. No, this time we went off the cuff, if you will – and I think you will – and decided to visit in March. Besides going on a non-Mountain Day day, it was also SNOWING as we left for our beloved alma mater. This should have been a sign that our visit was going to be a little nontraditional. But we ignored the warnings.
Say it with me: Dun. Dun. Dunnnnnnnnnn.
When we arrived at Berry, we found the cabin we were going to stay in. Liz, the super-de-duper check-in gal, said we were the only ones staying in the cabin, even though it could easily hold seven or eight people. We dropped off our stuff in our room and then left for the day, catching up with friends and praying to Martha at her grave.
When we returned that night, we saw a truck parked outside of the cabin. The porch light was on as well. Then BFF Jen and I had what is possibly the dumbest conversation known to man:
Her: Do you think someone is in there?
Me: I don’t know. We could ask the check-in gal.
Her: The check-in office is closed.
Her: So should we go in?
And off we went, wandering into a pitch-black cabin on the most remote part of campus with the distinct possibility of running into a serial killer occupying our cabin. Just a day in the life for us.
BFF Jen had a plan, though. And if Mrs. BFF Jen’s Mom is reading this, I am really, really sorry. Jen decided she would hold open the door while I called out in the hallway to see if someone answered. If a serial killer or even just a regular killer answered, we wouldn’t have to waste time opening the door to get out. Brilliant.
After a couple of “HELLOOOOOOS?” we heard a scraping sound – coming from the room next to ours. Before we could put our award-winning plan into motion, there appeared before us a man that I can only describe as Cloud Dancing from Dr. Quinn meets Chief Powhatan from Pocahontas.
He had long, flowing silver hair down to his waist, was half-naked, and looked completely surprised to see us.
“Hello, there,” the man said. “Are you staying here, too?”
I think we managed to nod.
“Okay, great. Well, goodnight.” And with that, he turned around, went back up the stairs, and after a few seconds we heard his door shut. Alrighty, then.
Then BFF Jen and I had possibly the second dumbest conversation known to man:
Her: What should we do?
Me: …ask the check-in gal?
Her: THE OFFICE IS CLOSED, KRISTEN.
Me: Right, got it.
Her: So, should we stay here?
Ah, but this time we had an even better plan: teamwork. BFF Jen isn’t my BFF for nothing – between the two of us there is an understanding that when one of us makes a dumb decision, the other one stands by her come hell or high water. Or strange Native American men. So we put our new and improved plan into place.
First, we each stood guard while the other one brushed her teeth and used the only restroom, located in the hallway. To get the visual, you have to picture BFF Jen – she is by far the tiniest fully-grown human being I have ever known. And then you have me, the very picture of strength and speed. Together, we made the worst superhero team the world would ever see. But we are nothing if not dedicated and eachstood outside the bathroom door with my tiny can of hot pink (breast cancer awareness, baby!) mace, ready to spray and then run at the slightest provocation.
Eventually we made it into our room. Now that we were inside, how did we keep the man out? He probably had a chainsaw and/or a sword that could cut through the lock. But that didn’t matter, because the door didn’t lock. Are. You. Kidding me.
This might be a problem for some people, but not for us – we just adapted to the situation. BFF Jen and I proceeded to stack every single piece of furniture in that room against the door. Nightstands, chairs, wobbly table-thing that had no clear purpose; you name it, we stacked it.
But we didn’t stop there – we set our suitcases against the pile of 1980s furniture to ensure that, in the event the evil murderer made it through the furniture barrier, we would hear our suitcases fall to the floor and would wake up in time to escape. How we thought we could get past a grown man and a 4-foot stack of furniture, I don’t know. Clearly event planning is not in either of our futures.
And, just in case we had to resort to force, we carefully selected some weapons to keep by us on the only nightstand that was bolted to the wall: the pink mace, Jen’s curling iron, and my hair straightener. I remember telling BFF Jen, “It heats up in just sixty seconds.” Because a good plan is all about how quickly your weapons will heat up.
Finally, after a long couple of hours listening for noises, we went to sleep. And lo and behold, the next morning we were completely alive! Victory! As we began to dismantle our barrier, I heard footsteps on the floor and froze.
“Good morning!” the man called through the door. I wanted to open it to be polite, but the furniture was a lot harder to move without the adrenaline rush. “Sorry if I scared you!” he added.
“Oh… that’s okay!” I shouted back. “Sorry… we got scared!”
“No problem… I work here,” he continued, as if silently pleading me not to call the police and ruin his day. “I know the college president.”
“Hey, cool. Me, too.” That was really all I could think of at the time.
“Well… anyway, I’m going now. Enjoy your stay.” And he was gone, probably glad to be rid of us. Who could blame him?
So, kids, here’s the moral of the story: Don’t be a moron. And don’t go into dark places with strangers. But if you absolutely, positively have to, look for furniture and break out the hair accessories. Works every time.