We found the inn, no problem, after running the outlet store gauntlet just south of the town. I didn't even fall in the icy parking lot, and for once we checked into a BNB while it was still light out. The jacuzzi was smaller than I was expecting, but it was deep and had jets, so I was mostly happy. The gas fireplaces were neat, though linked to the room thermostats (only source of heat) and didn't go on except at night when it cooled down.
We headed out for dinner at the Lobster Trap, off the main drag through North Conway, on a road that runs parallel to it. A woman was impatiently waiting to be seated in front of us, and gave up just as the server came back to seat her, so we got her table, in the "quiet" area as I asked - the main room was filled with families and large tables. Apparently the quiet area was mostly reserved for locals, the owner, his wife and son served us, and we got drawn into conversations that started above our heads with the guy at the bar and the guy at the table next to us. It surprised both of us when the two of them introduced themselves at the end of the night, they seemed like old friends until then! Politics and skiing dominated the conversation, and Cris got some pointers about his stance from the owner. Oh, and the food was good - I had lobster on top of really good linguine. We went back and snuggled into the really high really big bed.
We did a couple of runs together on the bunny hill (they had a conveyer belt to get you up to the top) while Cris remembered his lessons from last year, and then we took the double double up to the top, and spent a while getting down again. Then we went up half way and the trip was faster, as they seem to have mislabeled some blue runs near the top as green ones. A big difference from Sunapee where I went last weekend, where Jason and I could make it down black diamond runs with little problems. Here, no way. In any case, Cris improved in leaps and bounds and we broke for lunch at around noon, walking through the pedestrian tunnel under the highway to the pizza joint across the street. We beat the rush, and had a pretty good deep dish pizza for not too much money. Then, back to the slopes, where we split up so that I could try going up to the summit and Cris could work on his own. It was cold up there, and windy, and icy, and I promptly took the connector over to Bear Peak and did a couple of runs over there, much less crowded and not so icy. The crowds weren't bad in general, as people were possibly holding off to go next weekend for the long one. We met back up at the cafe, and sat outside sharing a hot cocoa, and then resumed skiing together. I was impressed, Cris was zooming down the green hills like a pro, and recovering from potential falls with elan. I stuck with him through to 3:30 or so, and did a run by myself while he returned his skis, and my knee made it known that it didn't want to do any more - I wasn't wearing my brace, no ill effects.
We were glad that we were only a quick drive from the inn and the jacuzzi. The hostess had forgotten to make our dinner reservation, but she called while we were changing for dinner. When we got to the Stonehurst Manor, after negotiating the icy parking lot there, we found that we'd worried needlessly, there was only one couple there, and the room slowly filled in as we were eating. Our waiter took good care of us, and we had a swanky pre-valentines dinner for a very reasonable price. It seems like they rent out three bedroom suites for a good price, we're considering going back and staying there. The tiramisu to end with was very very good. We were pretty wrecked after skiing all day, so we ended up reading for a while and then falling asleep early.
We popped into a few of the outlet stores, but only the Pearl Izumi one yielded loot for Cris, and nothing for me. Good for my credit card, at least. Snow was starting to drift down, it was around 2pm, so we hit the road south. We beat the snow out of the mountains, and mostly avoided rush hour traffic around Boston, detouring to Bedford to pick up something at Cris' office. We went out for dinner at Molena, a new Persian restaurant in Watertown center (sour cherry and saffron rice was amazing), and then I struggled to keep awake with my book while Cris ran over to Ceremony for a little while. All in all, a good relaxing weekend, with lots of sun, fresh air, and the best partner possible to share it all with.