cryophilic.

[krahy-oh-fil-ik]

adjective

  1. preferring or thriving at low temperatures.

When talking about plans for tomorrow, I said to a friend, “Oh tomorrow afternoon will be 24 degrees, so that’s not bad.”

He said, “Imagine if your Florida friends heard you say that.”

“Ha! Good point. And I really mean it, 24 isn’t bad.”

Am I cryophilic Idahoan? Nah. I wouldn’t say I necessarily prefer or thrive in the low temperatures. But skate skiing in the sunshine on a brisk day is invigorating. Sometimes I hope it will be too cold to go out, so I don’t feel guilty to sit by the fire and write and read. Today is one of those days, a break from pretending to be cryophilic. The low is -6. Which is 30 degrees below “not bad.”

So I’ve decided to take my rambly notes from the saloon and around town and put them in the computer, like an active participant in 2016. There have not been many nights in my five months here that I haven’t jotted and scribbled about quirky customers, new friends, or unusual circumstances.

IMG_20160201_103739.jpg

Most seem to be about the regulars. It makes me smile to think half of my closest friends here are the older gentlemen that come to the bar every single day. They have lived lives full of impressive work and crazy experiences that I can’t wait to hear about.

For one fella, I move the stools around so his is the softest one next to the backrest. Another brings appetizers like homemade elk sausage or bacon wrapped shrimp. I hate shrimp, but I put a huge one in my mouth and give an enthusiastic thumbs up. The guy on the end greets me with a “Good evening young lady/kiddo/little one.” Sometimes they bring in Trivial Pursuit cards and between the six of them and the bartenders, they successfully pursue the pursuit.

One has given me fly fishing and downhill skiing lessons. He refers to the saloon as his “office.” When I see him around town, he says, “See you at the office, Elizabeth Anne?” One gives excellent book recommendations and is an expert on Hemingway. Another was on the Olympic luge racing team in 1964. He has an extensive hat collection and I think he is getting used to sharing stories about each one with me. Last night, he had one on I’ve never seen before and other customers prevented me from hearing the back story. I have to get to the bottom of it tonight. He also brings in coins and old photos and I gawk and he beams.

I care about them deeply. I feel like I’ve found my way into a family of sorts, one glued together with Bombay Sapphire and Stella. Just another day at the office.

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