A Visit to the Overlook Hotel

Way back in 2003, the Wife and I were in Denver and we took a side trip to visit Tom Piccirilli and Michelle Scalise. We got together in Estes Park, where Michelle took us on a brief tour of the Stanley Hotel, made infamous for its role in the creation of Stephen King’s The Shining. King named his version of the hotel The Overlook, and it later appeared in the TV miniseries version of The Shining.

It’s a cool place, and while it’s not near as remote as it appears in The Shining, once you get up to the hotel itself you can’t shake the creepy vibe the fictional history lends it. As we were walking out, I ran out onto the edge of a walkway out front and snapped a couple pictures of the front of the place, including Tom, Michelle, the Wife, and the Midget (barely a toddler at the time) coming toward me. I caught a few that I thought looked great, including one I thought would make a nice picture for the office. The sun wasn’t quite in the right place and the focus on the family & friends could have been better (it was just a simple point-and-shoot camera), but it was mine and I was happy with it.

Then I promptly lost the picture. I was juggling systems and hard drives at the same time, I procrastinated making prints, and before long the pictures disappeared. I was fairly certain I screwed up and deleted one of my backups that may have included those pics, and I figured that was that.

Flash forward five years. I’m digging through a box of junk and I find a CD labeled “laptop backup” and dated back to ’04. It had pictures on it, so I imported them to iPhoto. Over time I’ve been going through and sorting them out, tagging them, and so on, when I stumbled across a picture of the elk from Colorado.

Dare I hope?

I scrolled through the pics and boom! Found her:

Guests check in... but they dont check out!

Guests check in... but they don't check out!

It made my day. I hate losing pictures, but I missed this one and I have no idea when I’ll be able to get out to visit Colorado again. Even if I did go out there and reproduce it with better light and my new camera, it wouldn’t have the same magic attached to it. I still procrastinated on buying a print, but believe me, I’ve got backups!

Now that I’m getting ready to send Tom a copy of my book, I thought he and Michelle would like a copy of the picture. This morning I uploaded it to Flickr, ordered a copy, and the Wife picked it up while she was out grocery shopping. I finally have a hardcopy in my hot little hands.

Of course I forgot to tell her to pick up a picture frame, so now it’ll probably get buried on my desk and collect dust for another year or two.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

Comments are closed.