Don't hate me because I'm beautiful

Or that I stayed here last weekend.

Yes. This is our love shack in the woods.

Well. There was lovin’ going on somewhere, mainly the walls, judging by the number of six-legged creatures waving their antennae at us as we huddled in our beds, cooked our meals and showered our bodies.

OK. So it was really a cheap shack. But it was our cheap shack tucked into a perfect white pine forest, the kind that whispers your name when the wind blows.

Either way, we spent a weekend in the woods. Bugs be damned, we needed this break. No TV. No Internet access. Cell phones worked but we switched them off. I didn’t even use the I-pod. I swear. Instead, I did a lot of walking and staring at nature. Girl from the East discovered the joy of sand and never once asked for the tee-vee.

My husband said he loves me because any other wife would have demanded a hotel after the first discovery of ants and probably would have threatened divorce upon the realization that the place had the dreaded “R” word infestation. (Shhh. That’s roaches for the uninformed.)

I’m an outdoorsy kind of gal. I like to pitch tents and swat away the wildlife before zipping up the sleeping bag. In fact, I think I’d rather have slept on the forest floor under those sighing pines than in the confines of an infestation.

Spending any time in nature makes you realize how little you really need. It also makes you realize how much you can really tolerate if there’s a trade-off. In this case, we had access to a beautiful piece of land almost all to ourselves.

We reminded ourselves that in many parts of the world, this is how people live: inside four simple walls, with lights and heat, and not much else in the way of frills.

If this all sounds like a high-falutin’ way of justifying a weekend in a roach motel, yup, you’re right.