You and I were not fast friends. In all fairness, I wouldn’t say that I am your target demographic- I don’t like bugs, dirt, cold weather or sleeping bags, not to mention that cooking chicken out of a cooler gives me anxiety. What’s that? Why did I put you on the list then? Good question. For two reasons, actually: the first being that Brian (the man I happen to love) is a huge fan of camping (It speaks to his soul or something like that) and I wanted to try something he loves. The second being that I always felt a tad left out when I would hear people talk about camping and they always seemed happy when sharing their stories about you! So I decided to stretch myself and put you on my list.
The highlights from my time in the wilderness include making s’mores (they really are a lost dessert) , cuddling by the campfire with Brian (can you say romantic) and the beautiful mountains of Big Sur (jaw dropping).
The other highlights include an 8 mile hike (complete with over-grown brush, poison oak, a supposedly “cute” snake and a bobcat sighting on the trial where I happened to be wearing a backpack filled with cured meats), having to shower in a communal shower (gross), sleeping on rocks (awe-some. If you haven’t tried it you must!) and having to walk through the dark woods in the middle of the night to pee (facing fears over here people!).
But, despite all my complaints about you, I still look back on our time together with fondness. You taught me to appreciate my bed. You gave me the opportunity to see how cute Brian looks when building a fire. You made me feel connected to nature. You made me laugh. You brought out a fun, brave and silly side of me and well, I appreciate you for that.
Will I be an avid camper? No. Will I camp once a year? Maybe.
A trip down memory lane…
“My first thought upon seeing the folded tent was “Now what?” I had no idea what to do with that heap of fabric lying in the dirt. I told Brian that I would do my best and to just give me a job. After 15 minutes we had a tent!! My first thoughts when I saw my new home was…I like its color scheme and “now what?”.
”Now what?” was a constant thought during my camping trip. The other refrain was “This is some backwoods shit.” No matter what was happening I would refer to it as “backwoods shit”. Brian hated it when I would say it. He informed me that nothing about my situation was “backwoods shit” because we had hot water to shower in and a flushing toilet house. He also didn’t think it was a very “PC” thing to say. In the attempt to not offend, I ended up whispering it to myself every five minutes. I couldn’t help it because I saw some crazy shit.”
“Day 2, Brian and I decided to do a 8 mile hike. Well, actually Brian decided that we were going to do an 8 mile hike and I mumbled “yes…sounds great”. When starting 365 til 30, I made a promise to myself that I would simply say “yes” to things even if they didn’t fit into my idea of pleasurable. Reason being, I usually end up enjoying the things I think I won’t. So I happily agreed to an 8 mile hike AND to carrying a backpack full of cured meats for our lunch. Both of these were very hard for me to say “yes” to with a smile.”
“The Chicken consumed my thoughts prior to the trip. I simply did not trust Brian about the chicken situation. He attempted to assure me that it was ok to travel with raw chicken in an ice cooler and then…eat it. Even more disturbing…the plan was to cook the chicken on night two. This seemed wrong to me. Terribly wrong. But, I didn’t want to hurt his feelings considering he had already done so much to make my first camping adventure perfect. So after a few conversations I acted like I let it go. Cut to our drive up the coast when I slipped and asked “Hey Brian, where is the raw chicken in relation to the apples in the cooler?” He looked at me like he was worried about my mental health.”
“Some national parks have long waiting lists for camping reservations. When you have to wait a year to sleep next to a tree, something is wrong.”