We finally arrived at Thunder Bay Resort and settled in our deluxe cabin with the blue interior. Then we headed out, all dressed up warm for the sleigh ride. It had thawed for a day or two in this area and to save the horses, we had to ride on wheels. Even though it was the same carriage, I was disappointed because I have always wanted a sleigh ride and it keeps eluding me. But when I saw the horses my heart melted. They were draft horses, about twice as big as regular ones. I wanted to ride in the second vehicle which had horses of dark rusty brown with tawny manes. They also had red collars which set them off. I learned that a sleigh in that weather would make these adorable animals work too hard.
We got in with our blankets and started off to find the elk. Whenever we turned a corner, I could see all the other wagons, about five, behind us and it looked so amazing. We went deep into the woods. It wasn't snowing, but there was a light fog that made the close-ups of the horses seem in a fantasy world. As we wandered over a one lane bridge and watched the horses' manes go flop flop when they ran to get up a hill, our guide (in a long leathery coat and broad brimmed hat) told us silly stories and details about the elk we were about to see. We finally had some sightings along the way. They are huge animals. We learned that their antlers grows about 1 and 1/2 inches a day. Wow! We saw some other elk close-up and got great pictures.
We arrived at our destination after about an hour. We went into a cabin all rustic and lit up for Christmas. Each table had real linens and red napkins, "crystal", and china. I love the contrasts. Here we were treated to entertainment, meeting new people, and an eleven course meal. We sat and chatted and watched and sang and ate for over four hours. I tried to pace myself, but I couldn't eat much of the entry which was course #10. And believe it or not, every course was good, somewhat unusual and very tasty.
So I ended my year with my best friend and we got to wish each other Happy New Year and we had quite an adventure. This was all somewhat unexpected and I just rejoiced in the way things sometimes work out. Am looking forward to January's fresh start. I love this time of year. Do you?