Date: February 4, 2010
Friend: Evan Trofholz
Location: Fontenelle Forest
Total $ spent: $0
A friend of mine recently complained about having nothing to do. She had cabin fever and felt like Omaha shuts down in the winter. She whined and belly-ached, and was generally annoying to all those who came in contact with her. Okay, let's be honest. It was me, I'm that friend. I'm only four days into my social experiment, and I've proven myself wrong over and over. Even when it's snowing and gray and slushy and windy and there are endless reruns of The Gilmore Girls to watch, there is always something to do. Today was no exception. My $1 date for today was my friend Evan and we went hiking at Fontenelle Forest.
Before we confirmed our plans to go to Fontenelle, I asked if we should have a backup $ date in case the weather was uncooperative. Evan's reply, "you not be a wussy IS the backup plan." You can see why we are friends. So I ate my breakfast of champions, wore 14 layers, switched into a sensible messenger bag (which subsequently stained my white puffy coat), and decided I wasn't too citified to handle a hike.
Can we really call it hiking? I think so. It was the closest thing to hiking I've done since that one time in college when I went to that one place where it was all nature-y and dirty. Thankfully, it wasn't too cold today but it was overcast and snowed off and on. You would have all been very impressed because I didn't fall down once. Seriously! I'm not saying I didn't slip, or that I was above reaching for help a time or two, but I did not fall! Evan didn't fall either, but he did come awfully close to sliding into the Missouri River and by mid-hike his tuchas was wet.
Evan is most comfortable in his skin and in his environment when he's outside. He loves the sun, the earth, and most recently he has discovered his fascination with water. His grandma reminded him that water is the most powerful thing on earth, which prompted a quick debate about erosion. Evan thinks that erosion is physical and I argued that it's also chemical. If any of you know the correct answer you may share it on a comment below, as long as my theory is correct. Normally I would give Evan the benefit of the doubt because he is a teacher. But I'm sure it won't surprise anyone to hear that I occasionally enjoy playing devil's advocate and being a weeeee bit sarcastic.
Evan and I met at the e-Cremery in Dundee on the night of the Stanley Cup Finals last summer. I was absolutely and positively DEVASTATED when my beloved Red Wings lost (it's still difficult to think about...my hands don't want to type the words....). He was comforting in that "I don't really watch hockey, but you really seem like you might beat me up if I say the wrong thing" kind of way. But it's only fair because his favorite team is the Huskers. (OH! Burn!) We are both intellectual snobs who are easily amused by bathroom humor.
We were a little disappointed that we didn't see much wildlife other than a death-defying squirrel, a baby bluejay, and very confused mosquito. But we did hear birds and enjoyed playing with the ice on the banks of the Mighty Missouri River. Oh, and there were those random gunshots....but we both decided it was best to pretend we didn't hear them. We saw just one other person during the whole afternoon and while he seemed friendly enough, we let him go his way. As we hoofed through the snow (I was more huffing and puffing), we played a bit of "who would you rather meet" and I kept chosing Dave Matthews over Kevin Spacey. Don't get me wrong, I have no beef with Kevin Spacey. But if given the opportunity, I would want to meet Dave. He's just, you know, Dave!
At the end of our afternoon, we were both hungry. But what to do since I can only spend one dollar? Evan wanted to try a burrito at the Homestead Inn (at 48th and Q) and since I can never turn down a burrito, I let him buy me a meal. Once we found the place and figured out which door to use (we may or may not have gone all the way around the building due to the "use other door" sign, only to discover that the "other door" was about 10 feet away from the original door we tried to open), we salivated over our tasty food. Sadly, my camera batteries had died so I can't show you the ridiculously delicious Mexican pizza thing that I devoured. But just to clarify, the point of my 28x1x1 project is not to make other people buy me things.
While it was a beautiful winter day, probably one of the best to visit Fontenelle, we both missed the vibrancy of the spring and summer landscape. At least this kind of weather gives one the opportunity to really see through the trees, beyond the horizon, and up to the great big sky. I may be a city slicker, but I could get used to this nature thing.