Stranger Things: A Team Retreat to Remember

Like most celebrated adventures, our 2016 team retreat began with breakfast burritos. The Lincoln Deli delicacies were tater tot filled to fuel the next 24-hours of fun, starting with a series of SEVEN death defying ziplines in Santa Margarita.

Granted we’re all in shirts handmade for one another that express the more absurd aspects of our personalities as we embark upon our epic quest.

If you’ve never been ziplining, let us break it down for you. First of all you’ll want to be in tight pants, like the Robin Hood: Men in Tights kind of tight. Expect a smiling college kid to physically fit you into a harness. This will be the only thing keeping you from plummeting down into the vast grapevine covered valley hundreds of feet below.

Once you’ve worked up the courage to jump, you’ll delight in watching the overwhelming look of panic/joy on your friend’s faces as they take a flying leap (or attempt to juggle).

After the athletic episode of the day, we took our sweet time thrift shopping for inventive accessories to be worn at the Madonna Inn, our fabulous dinner/slumber party destination.

From hot pink boas to glittering gold sunglasses and a patchwork rainbow vest – each of us found that special something to make the people around us uncomfortable.

Fast forward to the Madonna Inn, where a few of us took a dip in the hot tub before dinner. Here we solved most of the world’s most pressing problems over Moscow mules and baked chips before finally arriving at the protein portion of our evening…steak dinner. I’m proud to report no one ordered salad as an entrée.

A few of us even danced while the non-dancers looked on in an all too common combination of befuddled amusement and sheer terror. Then it was time for the annual costume contest and gift exchange.

Here’s where the creativity of our team really shines. Adrienne handily won best costume with her business casual spin on Sponge Bob Square Pants while Matt Rice earned the ultimate gift-wrapping honors for hiding an In-N-Out gift card in a cardboard box full of day old fries. After a few beers we hit the hay, woke up and started the 364-day countdown to our next retreat (after a hearty unhealthy breakfast of course).

What kind of trouble will we get into in 2017? Time will tell. Do share your ideas.