Six travelers are stranded in a small ski lodge on Mt. Hood by an avalanche. The colorful innkeeper and his wife are still able to provide food and drink as they have an emergency generator that keeps the electricity going – if somewhat spottily, and gas for oven and stove. They do have to turn the heating system very low to conserve energy. So, the travelers are grateful for the huge wood-burning fireplace around which they gather every night. There is no internet connection due to the storm. No one’s phones or laptops are working nor do the inn’s TV or its computer receive signals.
To distract themselves until help makes it up the mountain, the travelers agree to entertain one another with stories, true or not – they just have to be good.
After the breathtaking end of the motorcyclist’s tale, the travelers are ready for bed, but the drama teacher, a petite, lively woman with bright brown eyes promises them a happier end to her tale, which she is saving for breakfast.
The next morning, she tells her story with grand gestures and varying inflections of voice and so much excitement that the others feel like they’re seeing a one-woman play unfold before their very eyes. Her tale, she tells them might remind them of Chaucer’s “The Clerk’s Tale,” but she assures everyone, “it’s not nearly as grisly. No need for that. It’s a perfectly good story without any gore.”
A Wish Your Heart Makes
Third up is a big, burly man with long grey/blond hair. He arrived on a motorcycle despite the snowy conditions and nothing seems to perturb him. He has been pretty silent through much of the chaos the followed the power failure. He’s listened attentively to the first two stories but didn’t make any comment on them. The others want to get to know him better so they urge him to tell the next tale. He tries to put them off, but they won’t have it. They are convinced that such a colorful character must have some really great stories to tell. They are determined to hear at least one.
His story, a retelling of the Knight’s Tale from Canterbury Tales, is as exciting as they had hoped and more romantic than they expected.
What Cost Love
First up is the Tech Writer. (a.k.a. Rob) He’s the best skier in the group, but a bit of a loner. No one’s gotten to know him very well because, although tall, slender and well-built with chiseled features and deep-set grey eyes, when he joins the âpres-ski activity in the bar, he listens more than he speaks although he does from time to time display a quick wit. He spends most of his free time working his lap top creating, what the others assume are vastly complex and erudite programs for exceptionally specialized fields of technology that none of the rest of the guests could understand or would even care to explore.
His story is based on Chaucer’s “The Miller’s Tale.” As “No Fool Like an Old Fool,” unfolds, it both shocks and delights his listeners.
No Fool Like An Old Fool
The second tale comes from a Psycho-Dramatist, a delightful older woman, who has been solicitously making sure that everyone else was comfortable. Her lovely blue eyes always seem to sparkle and she chuckles at each of their inconveniences and is very instrumental in keeping the group calm, helping them to be able to see their predicament as an adventure rather than a disaster. She volunteers to tell the next story after first preparing cups of herbal tea for the other guests and offering each of them a delicious shortbread she helped the innkeeper bake that afternoon.
Her story, “What Every Woman Wants,” based on Chaucer’s “Wife of Bath’s Tale” demonstrates that romance has twists and turns and unexpected endings sometimes.
What Every Woman Wants
No Fool Like An Old Fool