Of Camping

Growing up, camping was not a popular activity at our house. We were farmers and farmers stayed home and worked 95% of the time. Chores and all the things demanded constant attention and left little time for other things. Once a year we went to Ohio and camped with Mom’s family and that was the highlight of our year. We were kids and therefore sleeping on the ground was an adventure.

Fast forward a few years and I got married, and unknown to me, I married into a camping family. Eric soon realized that multiple camping trips a summer while sleeping on a damp, gritty air mattress in a little tent, made for an unhappy wife. Ten years and three children later, we purchased a camper. It needed an entire winter of fixing, but in the end, it was worth it. It tipped the scales to a much nicer camping experience and a much happier wife.

Our children now believe that summer must revolve around camping. If we go less then twice, it’s a crying shame, say they and their father! So, I pack the things and go along. It is still not my favorite thing to do, but has become much more tolerable then it once was. Give me a fan, some water, good company, and I will camp. Oh, and food, give me all the food.

This summer scheduled itself and we ended up with three weekends in a row of lawn chair sitting. They were good weekends, but I am now quite happy to remain in the luxury of my home for a very long time.

Generally there is a lot of game playing among the people with whom we camp. That requires too much thinking and sitting so I prefer to stroll by and catch a glimpse occasionally.

One weekend of camping was down at the Millfam farm and that is about 1/4 mile from our house. The long and the short of a weekend like that is keeping the path back the the house well traveled. We run a vehicle, the dirt bike, or the ranger home to take a shower, grab some food, bring some more clothes, take freezer food home, change a load of laundry, and you get the point. Is it technically camping? In my book it still is.

The next weekend we were in IN with my family. We didn’t pull the camper out there but instead slept in a cabin. We spent the rest of our waking hours outside enjoying the beautiful weather. We were expecting hot and humid, but instead it was perfect camping weather, with the exception of a few rain showers thrown in. Doesn’t it always rain at least once when you camp?

Cooking over a fire doesn’t really thrill any of us so we had a few big griddles and grills along to save ourselves some work. You say it’s not camping to cook like that? It’s my kind of camping.

Saturday we did some exploring to places we went when we were kids. It was fun reminiscing those Sunday afternoon drives we used to take.

All the grandchildren except Madison.

And when it rains it pours. We were hiding out under everything we could find, table clothes, beach towels, and even trash bags, and the wind was still driving the rain in on us.

When the rain finally stopped, it was time for a fire. We are not your typical campers and therefore not your regular fire builders either. Dad was spraying diesel fuel trying to build it to roaring in just few minutes while Tys strolled by, hoping not to melt his trash bag raincoat.

Evening campfires are probably my favorite part about camping. Everyone gathered around, kids roasting marshmallows, conversations running from one topic to the next, good food being eaten, and depending which group you camp with, there will be some campfire singing. There always good times around the fire.

Do you like to go camping?
It’s growing on me.
Maybe when I’m old it will be my favorite pastime.

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