"Gaby, Mum asked me to go up to the cabin and check that all is good for Christmas but I have a deadline to meet...."
"Oh I know what's coming, you want me to go up to the cabin and I bet you it's not a deadline you have to meet. It's a new date that you have. I can sass you out very quickly big brother." Gaby laughed. "Not a problem Jack, I could do with a weekend away in peace where I can do some work. The cabin will be ideal. Unlike you I do have a deadline to meet!" She felt a rush of excitement as she put down her phone. What a perfect opportunity I now have to work on my project in peace and quiet.
With her suitcase ready in the hall, Gaby just had to pack the last of her supplies for the weekend in her cooler box. Patties and buns for burgers, pasta for one night, cream and coffee - can't do without that. Bacon and egg for one morning will do and definitely two bottles of Merlot and a Lindt dark chocolate. That should do it. Gaby checked everything for the last time, then she heard the doorbell. Must be Jack with the keys.
There was Jack complete with scarf and gloves. "Please don't let Mum know I am letting you go up to the cabin instead of me. You know how she is about you going there alone!"
"No problem. I will be switching off my phone and you can tell her you don't know where I am."
They hugged each other. "You're the best!" Jack kissed her on the forehead and Gaby saw there was someone waiting in the car for him. She waved, not knowing who it was.
The little red mini slowly wound its way through the forest. It was getting dark with heavy snow clouds hanging in the sky. Just a few more kilometers and I'll be in the cabin. This is going to be a snow storm and a half.
Gaby parked her mini and went round the back of the cabin to throw the electric switch. It took only two trips to get her luggage and supplies from the car and settle in. Refrigerator stocked and next on the agenda was to get the fire started. Thank goodness we always have a supply of wood inside. I must remind Dad we need to stock up the wood shed, not much left there.
Pasta with sauce was the easiest for first night. Gaby switched off her phone and put it into her briefcase, then curled up on the coach in front of the fire with her laptop. Now to start on the interior of Mrs Wickham's new living room.
Gaby had become a sought after interior designer in her town over the past two years and lately there was plenty of renovations happening to the old houses. She now had a store in the centre of the town displaying her work. She was far busier now that she could meet her clients in the store, show them swatches and discuss their plans with them.
With all the lightening and thunder Gaby couldn't concentrate on her work. She opened the front door a crack but closed it immediately. It was now snowing heavily and the wind was chasing the snow in every direction. This is a full on blizzard. I have never been up here on my own in these conditions.
There was a loud explosion and the cabin was plunged into darkness. It was only by the light of the fire that Gaby found her way into the kitchen. The electric board must have tripped. She stood there trying to make a decision. I really don't want to go out the back to throw the electric switch. I'll leave it till morning. Just have to stoke up the fire before I go to bed, that should keep the place warm.
After a restless night a cup of coffee would be welcome. Thank goodness for the gas stove. She looked out the kitchen window. The blizzard was still raging and the snow must have been a meter deep. She rushed to the front window. There was a blob of snow where her car was buried. If I open the door, the cabin will be swamped with snow.
Her sense of dread grew as she thought of the storm but Gaby decided to make herself a bacon and egg breakfast. Just sit tight. Don't panic. This will blow over soon. She pushed her food around her plate. I'll work on Mrs Wickham's project for a while. I might as well send Jack an email and tell him I'm okay.
The fire was going again and Gaby booted her laptop up. She felt a bit better. I'll first send Jack an email and tell him I'm okay. As she hit the send button she realized there was no internet. Not to worry, don't panic. It's only temporary because of the storm. Let me get to work on this design of Mrs. Wickham.
Gaby spent the entire day on her laptop designing, deleting, altering colours and as evening set in she realized she had not accomplished anything. Deleting the project she decided to make her supper and rather read her book. I don't know what I would have done without the gas stove and this solitary gas lamp. I'll keep the fire going tonight and when the storm eases tomorrow I'll see if I can get my car on the road and get back home.
The storm had dissipated and Gaby woke to silence. Good! Let me see how I can get back home. But to her dismay the snow was now even higher than the previous morning. She switched on her phone and still no signal was available. She booted up her laptop and 6% battery life was left. Gaby felt that sense of dread creep over her again. Think Gaby, think. I'll stay one more night. The snow might melt some today and I'll be able to get to my car or set off on the road to look for help.
Gaby tried not to panic. She nibbled on the left over bacon and egg of the previous morning and tried to keep her mind in her book.
Wrapping herself in the duvet she sat and watched the fire die out and the light of the day slowly receding. There was still some wine and her chocolate but she was too despondent to have either and later she nodded off to sleep on the coach.
There was the faint sound of a truck or a tractor. Too loud for a car. Gaby ran to the window. There was Mr. Frank's snow plough making it's way to the cabin. Is that Jack's car behind it. It took another forty five minutes before the front door could be opened and by now Gaby was in tears. Tears of joy and relief.
"Jack, you idiot, I'm so pleased to see you!" she leaned against Jack as he hugged her.
"I'm so sorry I put you through this. I started to worry yesterday morning when I couldn't get hold of you. Mum had been to your place and when she couldn't get hold of you, she went on one of her inquiries. The Spanish Inquiry had nothing on her and as you well know there's not much we can hide from her. Sorry again Gabs."
"I now realize how we take everything for granted. This episode could have turned out all wrong but it didn't. Forget about my car, I'm driving home with you. I'm cold and hungry and I want to be with my family tonight! "