Diary Of An Intrepid Camper: Countdown to Camping…. The Packing Ordeal

Saturday, June 23
Why is it that the lid to green plastic bin that got left out last time you packed up the trailer and then hung around the house for eight months tripping you up and reminding you that you really need to put it away because there is nowhere in the house for it to live, you know, THAT lid, why is it that when you are finally ready to camp again and want to pack the bin with food, you find that that cursed lid has DISAPPEARED off the face of the planet?

Sunday, June 24
7:34 p.m. Packing is so much easier now that the 10 and 12 year olds can pack their own suitcases. All I have to do is look over the finished product and share tidbits of wisdom that I have gathered in my experience over the years. Things like, “If you’re camping for five days, you will most likely need more than three socks.”

8:45 p.m.  Now at the point of packing where if I don’t sit down and play a couple of levels of Candy Crush Saga, someone will probably die. Don’t judge me.

Monday, June 25
8:30 a.m.  Having finished my morning coffee, breakfast and quiet time, I started packing the trailer, happy that the Day Of Departure has finally arrived.  We should be out of here by 11 a.m.

8:45 a.m. Kicked the 10 and 12 year olds out of the van, telling them there was no point in them sitting in their designated spots when we aren’t leaving until 11 a.m. at the earliest.

8:50 a.m.  ‎1,256 details running around my head of things to accomplish before we can leave + excited 10 year old who tends to show his excitement by talking incessantly about anything that pops into his mind = 10 year old is now banned from talking to Mom until we hit the road.

9:15 Packed some more into the trailer.

9:30 Packed stuff into the van.  Kicked the kids out of it again.

9:38 It has finally dawned on the dogs that we are packing for camping, but no one has told them yet that we’re not taking them. They are following me around… both of them…. looking up at me expectantly. Trying to avoid eye contact… AAAUGH.

10:00 Just discovered that after being kicked out of the van, the 10 year old took it upon himself to pack more things into the trailer, blocking the refrigerator, which some genius of a trailer designer conveniently located in the farthest corner from the door.

10:05 Unpacked trailer.

10:15 Packed food in refrigerator.

10:30 Gathered the luggage from bushes and trees in which it landed when it was forcefully ejected from the trailer by an irate woman who shall go unnamed.

10:45 Repacked the trailer.

11 a.m. -1:30 p.m.  Sat idly and waited for everyone else to get their act together, having completely finished every part of my own packing detail. (N.B. This entry may be a little inaccurate as the stress of not leaving at the designated time might possibly have skewed accurate memory recall)

1:00 p.m. Gave up on kicking kids out of van and just let them sit there and sweat for an hour.

2:00 p.m.  Played calming game of Candy Crush Saga while waiting for Boy Scout Husband to check and recheck hitch, hatches, tire pressure, oil and other boring things.  Pish.  Like those things are important.

2:30 p.m. Finally hit the road.  Took deep, calming breaths, although relaxation effect was somewhat hampered by coughing fit due to Los Angeles freeway pollution.

4:00 p.m  The 17 year old just showed me a page from her journal.  She has apparently been putting freeway time to good use and sketching everything she sees.

4:45 p.m. Driving up a mountain road singing “I Saw A Bear” with the kids.  They insisted I lead it.  WHY did I think it was a good idea to teach it to them 10 years ago?

5:15 p.m. Now singing about barfing up baby bumblebees.  Would really like to not have to take credit for this one, too.

5:30 p.m. Now singing “My Dog Cocoa Ran Away.”  I blame the PBS kids show Zoom for this one.

5:50 p.m. Having run out of camp songs, the 10 year old just suggested that we make up songs about everything we see.  “We’re in the forest and there is a building and I see the road and cars and other stuff too like…like uhhh… some cars and another building and the forest…more forest…..and…um…I like stuff I see..eh…er..lalalala…”

The 12 year old, being a quick study, jumped in with gusto:  “I see a tree, and a tree, and a tree, and a tree, a tree, a tree, treetreetreetreeSIGN and a tree again…”

The rest of the family decided not to partake in this form of song writing, especially after the 12 year old’s song degenerated to “I see a dead squirrel on the road–ROADKILL ROADKILL–I see a dead squirrel on the road–ROADKILL ROADKILL!”

5;55 p.m. The 17 year old just threatened to jump out of the car and walk the rest of the way.

6:15 p.m. Finally arrived at campsite.  Helped Boy Scout Husband set up trailer.

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6:45 p.m. Within three minutes of arriving at the campsite, the twelve year old discovered that it was populated by multiple red ant nests.  The 17 year old had two reactions.  The first was to try out the zoom lens on her camera:

The second, after she looked at the photo she had taken, was to remove herself to the nearest high point.

9:30 p.m. Dinner is done, dishes are washed, children are tucked into their various tents and bunks.  We should sleep well tonight.

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Categories: Camping, Family | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Diary Of An Intrepid Camper: Countdown to Camping…. The Packing Ordeal

  1. PattiLu McFarland Deeke

    LOVE your musings. YOU, my dear Julia, have always been my favorite author.

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