Monday, November 3, 2014

Something to Talk About on a Mountain Called Rainbow

It started out as a canoeing trip.  That's what my friend Sonny said when he first suggested a weekend at Rainbow Mountain in Pennsylvania sometime in October.  He wanted to check out fall foliage from the river...splendid, huh?  Well, it sounded like fun...something different, though it was originally going to happen a little earlier than this, the first weekend of November that brought with it the season's first frigid temperatures.  There would be no canoeing on this go-around, but as is always the case, it was full of...well, adventure and something to talk about for years to come.

I'd never been to the place, but I'd heard of it.  Rainbow Mountain...what a name, huh?  A gay mountain?  Really?  No, not's only a gay resort in the middle of the Poconos, and you know I'm always game for anything, anyway, especially when the possibility of a new kind of fun is in the cards.  I'd be going with not only Sonny, but with my other friend, Sean, too, through whom I met Sonny in the first place.  The two of them had been to the place many times over and they had their things that they liked to do when they go up there, including trips to a local outlet center and visiting what Sonny calls an Ewok Village.  I really had no idea what to expect, and as the trip got closer, Sonny tried to prepare me for my visit...

It's a bit rustic, but it's got it's own special charm..

He wasn't kidding!  The Rainbow Mountain Resort is unlike anyplace I'd ever vacationed in before. The place was sort of like a bed and breakfast, only a little dated.  I'll bet it hasn't changed much in 20, 30, or even 40 years.  In the main house, where we stayed, two bathrooms were shared by all and the plumbing was...well let's just say typical for a place somewhere in the mountains, with little water pressure at every turn.  There was a communal living space in the lobby where guests could watch TV, play games, mingle, or even carve pumpkins on this Halloween Weekend.  It was all very unlike my usual sort of vacation, where interacting with fellow guests is usually minimal.

Like I said earlier, I am always game for new adventures, and this trip couldn't have come at a better time.  With all of the stress I've been feeling the past week, I needed some time to get away from my usual surroundings and forget life, if only for a couple of days.  So none of these 'rustic' conditions and up close and personal interactions with fellow guests dampened my spirits. Not even the circumstances that were to follow, dubbed by Sonny as Brokeneck Mountain, made the trip regrettable.  On the contrary, it'll be an amusing recollection someday for the three of us, something we'll be talking about and for a long time to come, I am sure.

Something to Talk About

That's the three of us, Sean, Sonny and I early on at the local club on the property of Rainbow Mountain Resort.  It was the one really bright spot of the weekend, a two level barn/basement that had been converted to a pretty cool...and packed, nightclub/karaoke bar. Sean and Sonny are both karaoke aficionados, while I'm more of an over-aged club kid, so there was something for all of us to enjoy. They were having a Halloween costume party, which was well attended by a nice looking crowd of vampires, werewolves, sea urchins, scantily clad superheroes and scary clowns, so both the eye candy and the festive atmosphere were spot on and the three of us really enjoyed ourselves, that is, until we returned to the hotel...

Earlier in the evening, a trio of New Jersey-ans, two guys and a girl, had checked in to the resort.  I'd been outside smoking a cigarette when they were dropped off in a white van, one of the guys, a trashy queen, loudly complaining of the rustic conditions at the inn.  I should have known from that spectacle how things were going to be, but... The chick was a cousin to the trashy queen and it was hard to tell what the other guy's deal was, whether he was a lover of the queen or the girl, or just a friend, but they were all clearly trashed on some type of drug.

At first we mingled with them before heading on down to the club.  They had asked me to take their picture, which in turn lead to shots of whiskey and chit chat.  Thankfully, Sean and I eventually made our escape from their attention on the walk down to the club as the woman kept losing her balance and falling on the decline towards the barn, slowing them down as he and I sped up towards the entrance.  We didn't see them again until our return to the hotel after closing time...around 2:30 a.m. And that was when all hell broke loose.

I need to preface this part of the story by saying that it was 2:30 a.m., and it was the night we 'fell back' with clocks, so in reality it was 3:30 and we'd been partying for awhile.  Therefore I don't exactly remember everything, but here's what I do remember...

The two guys were arguing sometime around the moment we walked back into the hotel.  They were upstairs in the hallway in front of the door to their room, which was right at the top of the stairs, and the argument turned to fisticuffs very quickly.  The next thing I knew, several of us were trying to get between them.  The trashy queen seemed to be doing all of the pushing and shoving, while the other dude seemed to not want to fight at all.

All of a sudden trashy queen shoves the other guy down the entire flight of stairs and chases down after him, climbing on top of him at the bottom, only to continue pounding on his face.  There was a lot of blood and a lot of screaming going on and the next thing I knew the queen bolted out the door as Sonny called 911.  I spent the next half-hour or so with the bleeding dude's head in my lap, comforting him as best I could.  I don't really remember this, but Sean and Sonny said he had been unconscious at first, but came to eventually, but I do remember having to hold him down at one point as he tried to get up, in fear that he broke something like maybe his neck.  

The next thing I remember, the dude was gone, taken away by paramedics, and cops were in the lobby asking questions.  I fell asleep in a chair, having been woken by Sean to come upstairs once it was all done.  The next morning I woke up expectedly groggy, and trying to piece together what had happened.  Of course, the incident was the talk of everyone at the inn during breakfast.  Apparently the cops nabbed the trashy queen walking down one of the darkened roads and arrested him, the woman had been picked up and left soon after the incident, and the poor, bleeding dude had been taken to a local hospital where he was treated for only broken ribs.  There was no concussion thankfully.

At breakfast, Sonny noted that he was sort of proud of how Sean and I reacted to the melee.  Really, all of the others who were there pretty much just stood by and did nothing, as the three of us did our part...Sonny included.  He called us heroes, but if that's what we were, he was one as well.

By that morning, the temperatures had dropped so low and a chilling wind sent shivers through bodies with abandon and we abandoned our excursion to the Ewok Village, unfortunately.  It was just as well, though.  The excitement from Saturday evening had been quite enough and my body and mind were weary anyway.  The whole weekend adventure was typical of the sorts of things that happen in my life, and though it wasn't the weekend I envisioned, I can't be upset about it.  I did get to forget home for a couple of days and there was surely a lot of fun in there.  The whole mess at the end of the night only served to give us something to talk about for a long, long time to come...


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