The Canada Day long weekend camping trip consisted of sleepless nights (because the youngest member of the family takes up the most amount of bed space), cold days (because I doubt the temperature peaked above 20C all weekend), even colder nights (because it was a whopping 7C or 8C overnight), a lot of dirt, fantastic food (who says camping means only hot dogs and hamburgers?) and good company.
All that to say I enjoyed myself and you’ll likely find me at the same time and the same place next year.
What I liked most about camping was the idea that the most difficult thought of the day is when to hold a bocce ball tournament. Spending a whole weekend like that is something I don’t take the time to do often enough. Weekends (and weeknights) are always so full of trying to ‘get things done’ that there’s often so little time to put the mind at ease and do nothing at all. And that’s what I liked about camping. There was very little to do and that was fun.
It may have only been three and a half days away, but it felt like a real vacation. It was far enough away from the world I live in and the life I normally lead, that I forgot about things like chores, ‘to dos’ and work. So much so, that when I got back to the office this morning, I felt relaxed and forgetful – in the sense that if I hadn’t left a to do list on my desk last Thursday it would’ve taken me awhile to remember what needed to be done today.
In the time we were there, I accomplished the following things:
· following Austin around the site (I think a large part of my time consisted of this)
· going for a hike with Ryan and Austin (to the waterfall pictured above)
· playing bocce ball
· eating pretty fantastic food
· sitting around a campfire
· hiding from the rain
All but the last point were what made camping fun. And all of those are what will make camping fun again. The thing I didn't like about camping were the things I couldn't control – like the weather. And the weather gods definitely weren’t on our side this weekend. On Saturday, we learned the true definition of scattered showers – as it rained three different times, and on Sunday it rained once. The rain meant we were often damp and cold and very good at cramming as many chairs and people (there was afterall 13 of us) as possible under the shade tent.
And it was cold. Shorts and t-shirts were a rare sight. Instead, a more common sight was adults wearing track pants and hoodies and kids wearing dirty clothes -- because dirty was better than wet.
And I didn’t like being cold at night. I’m the type of person, that in the middle of winter with my furnace blasting, I’ll be wearing flannel pyjamas and hiding under layer upon layer of covers every night. So, sleeping in a tent when it’s only 7C or so had me actually waking up because I was cold. And that was while wearing a track suit and hiding in a sleeping bag topped with 2 flannel blankets.
But then again, maybe I was cold and waking up because Austin kept hogging the bed. We had a lot of trouble getting him to sleep in his crib at night, which meant every night we ended up bringing him into bed with us. And every night, he’d toss and turn and kick until we were both practically rolling right off the air mattress.
But the cold and the rain are stuff that suck at the time and then fade to foggy memories over time. I figure by the time we’re getting ready to do this again next year, I will have forgotten how cold I was and will remember how much fun it was.