MURDER MYSTERY VACATION
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PART I: The Inn (narrated by Leigh)
I took a trip to Orcas Island last weekend with my girlboyfriend. We decided to stay at the Old Trout Bed & Breakfast because it felt like the perfect mix of hippie-country-grandma, and that was the vibe we were feeling.
When we arrived, we were greeted by an older Frenchman by the name of Henri. In the entryway was a fish tank that had been drained and filled with a little dirt and about 20 different fairy figurines in a magical forest scene. On top of the tank there was a book about fairies. Classical music was blasting. We were taken to what seemed to be the living room of his house, and told to sit down at a table while he got everything together for us. There were brochures for whale watching expeditions, a few fliers with information on where you could dine out on the island, and a printed email from the whale watching folks announcing a newborn calf named K-22 all spread out for us to look at.
Then Henri came back from the kitchen and sat down with us for a little while to ask us a few questions and get better aquainted. He asked us what we would like to drink with breakfast in his thick French accent,
"Would you prefer apple juice or orange juice?"
We both replied, "Orange juice, please."He told us about how you had to pay a fee to drive in Moran State Park, and disliked the poor budget choices the government had made for this to have happened. He wondered if this was our first visit to the island, and I explained I had been there several times, but it was Jude's first time in the San Juans. He talked about his garden, the common areas, and a few of the rules of the B'n'B. After the check in process was over, he showed us to our room, The Greenroom. We got up from our seats, expecting to walk a bit of a distance, but instead were taken to the door about two feet away from the table where we were just seated. He unlocked it, gestured to us to go on in, and came in behind us to show us around.
The bed was a Queen and super high off the ground. There were step stools on either side, which we appreciated since we are both pretty little dudes. The bedspread was floral, and the bed frame was carved and wooden with acorns decorating the tops of the posts. There was a throw blanket draped over the foot of the bed that had different kinds of flowers all over it with their names next to their picture. In the middle of the bed was a silver fish tray full of candy and a bunch more brochures about what to do on the island. There was a Bats Maru CD player and a stack of CDs including Bette Midler, and Ray Charles, and the TWIN PEAKS SOUNDTRACK, which we would listen to on repeat during our stay at the Old Trout. It just seemed appropriate.
The actual greenroom was on the southeast side of the house and overlooked the pond. It was a step down from the bedroom, behind the bathroom. This room was full of all sorts of country treasures including a vase-slash-teapot that was intricately designed to look like a charming little country cottage with cats and rabbits all around. There were several cacti, a jade plant, and a whole shelf full of mini wicker baskets. The TV-slash-VCR was in this room along with a pretty wicked collection of VHS from the late eighties/early nineties.
The bathroom was small, and there was a rainbow trout painting hung above the toilet. There was a window joining the bathroom to the greenroom adorned with homemade floral print drapes. Each room had just the right amount of thrifted country grandma goodness which was creepy and "charming" all at once.
When we were left alone to explore the Bed and Breakfast, we realized the walls in our room were paper thin. You could hear as much as a sneeze from the next room over, not to mention word-for-word conversation of anyone in or near the common area. We headed out on the wrap-around deck to the garden that Henri had spoke of during the check in process, full wine glasses in hand.
PART II: The Garden (narrated by Jude)
Henri, Henri quite contrary. How does your garden grow?
We didn't need to be on mushrooms to feel like we were trippin' balls in a psychedelic nursery rhyme as we strolled through garden. The only difference was this nursery rhyme read:
There was an old inn keeper who lived in a shoe, he only had a couple of guests so he knew what to do. He gave them some broth and a piece of bread...kissed them all gently and put them to bed.
Henri did knock ever so gently that night when he came to our door to call us to dinner. The dinner was somewhat pleasant. Awkward conversation in close quarters with a couple on their 7th wedding anniversary. Bad jokes, inquiries about employment and pass times. We brought our own bottle of champagne, which we were quickly informed would not go with the salad because of the combination of vinegar and bubbly.
“I thought champagne went with everything!”, exclaimed Leigh.
“To you, maybe. Enjoy”, uttered Henri.
We wound down the night in our room with the Twin Peaks soundtrack on repeat, as usual. Prior to the questionable circumstances of the bed and breakfast and inn keeper, we had a fabulous day seeing the sights of Mount Constitution. We took so many pictures during our exploration and were looking at them in our room after dinner. One creepy thing stood out. When we came across a picture we took near a pond, we noticed what looked like a person in a robe surrounded in blue light in the middle of the woods. Could it be an apparation? It kind of looked like Jesus, or a catholic saint.