We pulled up at the cabin, a pre-fab sentried by pines, a pair of old skis X-ing the apex of the roof, like something on a cartoon poison bottle. Grandpa had slathered a dull green paint over its wood so that it would “blend in” with its natural surroundings. It resembled a barracks. From the outside, this place could’ve been the staging ground for some bearded radical, someone whom San Francisco had failed. Inside sat evidence of a thriving thrift store. Even the books were Reader’s Digest Condensed, which made me think of soup. A deer’s head stared over the kitchen and hallway, above the cuckoo clock and the liquor, and the windows that squinted out over the California brome and, across the road, Squaw Creek, which ran cold and white with ripples. The creek had once slithered with brook trout. But they built hotels upstream. Instead of trout there are tourists, which are almost the same thing.
Slouching in the Path of a Comet