Perspective Of Yet Another Night Owl

My Weekend Camping
June 18, 2007, 3:37 pm
Filed under: Books, Camping, Family, Friends, Humor, Kids, Life, Travel

We arrived at the camp ground about an hour after we had planned.  The dog, who has only been camping once before, was more than ready to get out of the car.  We went to our space that we had reserved the weekend prior, and found a big yellow sign that read, “KOA VIP”.  The kids thought that was cool and started acting “important”.  They sure can be easy to please, well, sometimes. We had pre-reserved a specific spot in case I came alone with the kids, so that silly yellow sign cost us an extra $20.  We did however get a free bundle of firewood and a plastic table cloth for the picnic table for our “VIP” status.

We set up the camper pretty quickly once we finally leveled her out.  The set-up and take down of the new pop-up is becoming routine and we get quicker every time.  My son has taken to chopping some of the wood into kindling and starting the fire.  He seems to love that part of camping.  The hubby starts the grill, we are having pork tenderloin that has been marinating for a day or two.  It smells great and we are all ready to eat dinner.  My youngest and her friend that came along are off to explore the campground, but, “Can we have some money for the arcade?”  A couple of bucks each sends them off smiling and we can begin relaxing around the fire.

The girls come back to get money for the moon bounce trampolene. Last weekend this cost $2/hour and so we give them each $2 and off the kids go again.  My son comes back first saying this weekend they got 8 minutes for $2, and is off again exploring the woods.  The girls follow shortly and ask to go rent bikes.  Bikes were put off until Saturday as it was getting late. They can just hang out for the evening.  Not to mention, since when does inflation work that well???  $2/Hr to $2/8 minutes in just 7 days???? They also offered $7.50/day with limited time frames.  Wow, is all I can say. However, I later told the park I thought this was ridiculous pricing.  That $2/HR and $5/day was more reasonable.

The dog is physically fine, but only doing OK being around so many other dogs.  She is not socialized very much and gets excited when other dogs are around.  Although friendly, she is extremely playful and tends to jump up on people.  That wouldn’t be so bad if she were not close to 100 pounds.  She got used to it pretty quick and began to relax by the campfire as well.

Good music, juice for the kids, a beer for dad, and a daquari for me.  Everyone is ready to eat only to discover that paying attention the campfire, dog and kids, meant we ignored the grill.  The tenderloin, burnt on both sides, but still recognizable, did not look like good eating.  Being that it was dark now, a quick trip to the local A&W filled the void of food. 

I was extremely tired Friday evening, it was a long week.  Not to mention, if you noticed my post times, the “night owl” in me was catching up with me. So, believe it or not, I called it a night a little after 10:00.  I slept while the kids and Dad sat around the campfire for bit people watching until the all went off to sleep themselves.  The dog did well inside the camper, sleeping at the foot of our bed. 

The camp ground was extremely crowded this weekend.  I saw only 1 site in the entire place that was not rented this weekend.  On top of full capacity, Saturday was to be the silent auction for charity and numerous local bands playing the pavillion live until 10:00 PM. This attracted crowds that were not staying at the KOA. For a $5 cover charge, you could hang for the day.  All of this was on top of the regular schedule there of numerous free activities for kids and free family movies. It was more crowded than I had ever seen.

Saturday arrived and we had pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Well, the Hubby and kids did. They get up early when camping.  I slept in, as per my usual, and had coffee when I got up. I helped clean up and the kids and dad went off to the pool.  I took this opportunity to begin reading my book, A Salty Piece of Land, by Jimmy Buffett.  So I sat by the camp fire with my coffee and book and switched back and forth from talking to the passersby, reading, people watching and petting our dog.  A new camper pulled into the space directly in front of mine. 

My neighbors, 2 dad’s and their 3 kids were giving the mom’s a break this weekend.  In all honesty, it was, dad #1 bought a new camper and mom #1 hates camping, so he ivited dad #2, best bud, to bring his 2 kids along.  Which is fine, too, except that both dad’s are used to tent camping and have no clue as to how to use or set up this new camper.  The camping world is like the boating world.  Everyone offers to help, and we did.  We got them all hooked up, explained why certain things were done, and gave them a basic show and tell of the features of their camper.  They were thankful and the kids suddenly had other kids to play with right in their own site.  This is always a plus when the kids are occupied.

For lunch today, we just grilled some hot dogs and hung around the camp site.  The hubby went down and took a peek at the silent auction items.  The kids played skeeball for charity.  I wandered down to see the live bands and browse the few vendors that were there for the day, but didn’t stay there to long.  I prefer the solitude of my camp site and wanted to get back to my book which was pretty good so far.

Camping life is generally slow and doesn’t offer a whole lot to chat about sometimes.  This trip was proving to be one of those that was not going to offer too many laughs.  Darkness fell and the bands were still playing.  All the adults seemed to be drinking beer and enjoying themselves. 

Another camping neighbor came over and hands me the most beautiful smelling bunch of little flowers and greenery.  Smells like lavendar and sweet lemon, mint, the aromas are fabulous.  The little flowers in the bunches were cute.  She tells me that she grows these at home and that her criteria for growing it is just that it has to have a scent.   I love gardening, but my gardens have always been for looking at. Smell not sight.  This is a new way of thinking about a garden for me. I think I may give a mini “scent” garden a try. By the way, these little bunches are still smelling great and are in my kitchen now. 🙂

For dinner, we had hamgburgers on the grill, fresh corn on the cob, and baked beans. Typical for us when camping.  Everyone ate, the kids left to see Open Season, this evening’s family movie.  When they come back after the movie we are going to make s’mores.  None of us had seen this movie yet, so this one proved a good thing and all the kids took off to see it.  Meanwhile, I will go back to my book and hubby takes a nap. 

Later while we are making s’mores this guy goes running by while shouting, “You can’t catch me”.  It’s been a long time since I have played chase, but he looked to be running a bit faster than that. I don’t think he was playing a game. I wonder what is going on. Here come the KOA guys running after him with flashlights.  I watch, as do we all.  I see a lady with KOA who tells me that the running guy and another guy got into a fight near the moon bounce.  They were in a bit of a shoving match when KOA people tried to break it up.  Then one ran, and the chase ensued.

Well, most of the commotion over, I reassure my daughter’s friend, that this behavior is not the norm for this place and not to worry.  This happened to be her first time camping.  She told me she thought it was scary and I reassured her that this was just some drunk guy who would not bother us at all.  Plus, look now, the police are here!

Yep, I said it, the police.  Every available law enforcement officer nearby appeared to show up to catch this guy.  KOA or someone was pressing charges.  Since there is a national park right next door (Harper’s Ferry) there were Park police, regular WVA police, and I think even a warden of some type. Who knows it was dark now and we were busy roasting s’mores.  It didn’t take long, but the commotion finally died down and everyone was back to the norm for camping. 

The s’mores were sticky, sweet and yummie. We were all sleepy and sitting around the fire just talking.  A few of us tripped over the daggon fire pit grate, as usual, but no one was hurt. The dog has acclimated well to camping and we all head off to bed.  Well, except me, the night owl.  I went in the camper and read until nearly 4:00 AM, and yes, I am more than half way through the book I started.

Sunday, Father’s Day, finds the hubby making pancakes, bacon and coffee again. We all wish him a happy father’s day as I run off with the kids to rent bananna bikes.  This will occupy them while we get the camp all packed up again to go home later.  We sit around chatting, enjoying our coffee and campfire.  Pick up and pack up a bit here and there, not in any real rush. The hubby and I get it mostly done with the exception of a few small things. I have the hubby go meet the kids at the pool, while I finish cleaning up at the camp site. Once done, I head over to the pool for a quick swim before heading home.

The drive home goes quickly and we fall back into home life as if we never left.  The t.v. comes on, the hubby decides he wants wings for dinner, but only for carry out, so we go get it.  It is Father’s Day, it’s the least we can do.  Dinner was decent and easy clean up, so lounging for Sunday night t.v. can commence.  I pick up my book again, it’s good and I don’t want to put it down really, although I can. 

I had promised to write about our weekend on Sunday night, but decided to keep reading instead.  The family did talk about the week ahead and all that we have to do.  Monday night is the 5th grade graduation.  Tuesday is my youngest child’s class party. Wednesday is an end of the year pool party for my 8th grader.  So, on top of the ironing I am doing today, I am writing this (a day late) and taking the oldest to buy a new swim suit in the very near future.  I got very little reading of my book done today, but plan to read tonight, and if things go well, finish that book.  When I finish it, I will let you all know my thoughts.


2 Comments so far
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Sounds like you had a great weekend camping! My dog is big, too–105 lbs! He is a lab and freaks out in the car. I’d love to take him on a road trip if he would cooperate. You had it all–fun, excitement, adventure. Glad the drunk guy didn’t get in the way of your fun. 😉

Comment by shadesofpink

That sounded like a great weekend. Let everybody waiting at, know about your weekend fun. asks How was your weekend?

Comment by krish

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