Our night of passion was unforgettable.
I’d have loved more time with her, but she was a city girl passing through my lonely mountain village, only here to take photos of our festival.
She had no reason to return. So when she shows up again months later, I’m stunned.
Turns out her job sent her back with some unfinished business. I’d love another taste, but she says she’s done with me and plans to leave ASAP. I’m not about to argue…
Until I find out that she’s pregnant from our one-night-stand.
And once I know that she’s carrying my child inside of her"
I’m never going to let her go.Books by Author:Penny Wylder Books
As my train pulls into the quaint Bailey Village station, I feel a weight lifting from my shoulders.
I love my job, I really do. It"s taken me years to get where I am, but I"m finally doing what I love full-time"taking photographs. But it"s hectic to keep up with the market demand. My boss gives me great assignments, but I hardly ever have time to breathe, between chasing down my next photo shoot, actually doing the shoot, then editing all the photos post-event.
I didn"t notice how stressed I was feeling lately, between the four weekend weddings I photographed in a row on the side, and my regular job shooting events and festivals for the Philadelphia Gazette. But when my boss asked me to take on this project, shooting the big spring festival in Bailey, a small town about two hours outside Philly in the Poconos, for a feature he"s got planned on nearby weekend vacation spots, I practically tackled him to volunteer for the gig.
This is just what I need. A weekend away from it all"the hustle and bustle of the big city, the constant pressure of lining up my next gig practically before I"ve even finished the former, and even just the noise. My apartment is adorable but it"s right in the thick of things, above a bar that doesn"t close until 2am (and doesn"t quiet down until at least 4am) on the weekends, not to mention the traffic and construction sounds during the day.
I like keeping busy, but not at the expense of my sanity.
A whole weekend to myself, just to photograph one sleepy little village"s springtime traditions, with three whole days to shoot to my heart"s content, and plenty of time in between to meander around the village, breathe the fresh mountain air, welcome in spring along with all the locals out here.
I can"t wait.
From the moment I step out of the train station, I can tell I"m going to love Bailey. It"s got that European old world feel to it, with stone cottages as far as the eye can see, and even a cobblestoned street in the center of town lined with cheerily-painted shop fronts in a pastel rainbow of colors. The trees that line the narrow streets are in full bloom. I spot magnolias, even a couple cherry trees, mingled among the usual poplars and maples.
It takes my phone a few minutes to catch up to the slower reception out here"mapping the little hotel in the center of town I"ve booked for the weekend takes a full two minutes"but I don"t even mind. It"s nice to be a little disconnected for once. I have the perfect excuse if anyone tries to bug me over the next few days. "Sorry, no service!"
Finally, the map loads, and I take off, weekender bag slung over my shoulder, winding through increasingly narrow alleys until I get to a street that"s pedestrian only, at the end of which there"s a view of the massive central village square, where I can see people setting up tents and food trucks for the upcoming festival. I spy more than a few beer tents, not to mention catch the scent of some mouth-watering food cooking over an open fire somewhere in that direction.
My hotel is right on the corner, the perfect location for darting in and out in between shooting the festival and events around it. As I stroll up to the entrance, a short man in a red hotel uniform darts out, hand extended toward my bag.
"Checking in"" he calls, before I"ve even reached the entrance. "Let me help you with that."
"Thank you," I tell him, grateful, as I shrug the bag off my shoulder. It"s only the essentials, since I"m just here for three days and two nights, but I had to lug most of my camera equipment with me too, so that really adds up.
"Wow, how long are you here for, the whole month"" he jokes as he hoists the bag under one arm.
"I wish." I laugh. "Sadly, just for the festival."
"Up from the city"" he asks, sizing up my outfit, and probably also weighing the bag under his arm.
"How could you tell"" I joke, with a glance down at my outfit. Heeled boots, tights, a slim-fitting pencil skirt and my work blouse"I"m not dressed for the countryside yet. I had to come straight from the office today, but it really makes me stand out. Everyone I passed on the walk here was wearing jeans and flannel, maybe with the occasional flowery spring dress, loose and deliciously comfortable looking.
"You"re not the first to check in today," he reassures me, "and you definitely won"t be the last. It"s crazy"most of the year we have ten guests here max." We reach the check-in counter and he hauls my bag onto a bellhop cart with comical effort. "This time of year, though, around the festival"" He gesticulates wildly. "Sold out, every single room."