Building Interview #1: High Trails Kitchen

High Trails Dish Room

Ian and I pull into the snowy High Trails “parking lot” after deciding not to do the Speedwagon as our first interview, or the High Trails Craft Barn, and that we probably didn’t have enough time to get out to Quicks and back before Ian’s interview, and so I roll down the Suburban’s window to open the door because there’s no handle inside the car, and realize I have no idea how one even conducts a building interview. I guess I figured we’d take an artsy picture, and I’d write some insightful, nostalgic stuff about how it looks in the wintertime.

WM: I really appreciate you taking the time out to do this.

HT Kitchen: Sure, no problem.

WM: So: is it lonely out here?

HT Kitchen: Excuse me?

WM: I mean, without all the kids.

HT Kitchen: It gets quiet, but no, I’m not lonely. I don’t mind the quiet.

WM: How many squirrels live inside here?

HT Kitchen: No squirrels.

WM: Alright… Well, you know, I actually heard—

HT Kitchen: Sorry, but what is all this about?

WM: [WM puts his hand over the microphone] Off the record, OK?

HT Kitchen: …OK.

WM: How many squirrels?

An Artsy Picture

None of Vicki’s tools hang from the bakery hooks. The cookie jar isn’t even out on the table, with a few careless crumbs at the bottom. There is no reason to be here, and it is colder inside the kitchen than in the bakery. The stainless steel of the dish machine looks like we’d just sprayed it with vinegar and wiped it with dishrags hung from our aprons. A Nalgene and red mug sit next to the faucet, and sump buckets and fork and knife and spoon buckets and the kitchen’s serving spoon/whisk/colored nonstick paring knife/soup ladle bucket all lie downside-up in what we affectionately call the other window.

WM: What’s your opinion on net neutrality?

HT Kitchen: There’s no wi-fi here over the winter.

WM: Great! I think that’s all I need.

HT Kitchen: That’s it?

WM: [WM stands and they shake hands] Yep. See you March 27th!

HT Kitchen: I mean, but if you want to come by before then, if you’re in the neighborhood or something, you could… I mean to say, if you had nothing else to do.

[WM stands, silhouetted by the setting sun behind him, and with enough orange afterglow to light his slow smile and his almost imperceptible, yet fully sincere, head-nod, he gathers his things and leaves.]

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