Each year growing up, my parents took us on numerous trips. In the fall, we’d go to the coast and stay in a beach house for a week. In the spring, they would take us to Disney Land. But, one of the favorite trips they would take us on was probably the least expensive.
Every summer we would go camping. Now, as an adult, I know what a hassle it is to prepare. You spend a week just going through your check list to make sure you have everything you need. Tent, check. Sleeping bags, check. Extra propane, check. The list goes on and on.
My son is leaving tomorrow to go camping with my best friend, and it got me thinking, wow, I really miss camping. I haven’t gone for years now ever since we left Nevada.
I racked my mind trying to figure out what it is about camping that is so enjoyable. I think because it truly is a vacation from the real world. There’s no TV to suck you in, no computers. Sure, you have your smart phones but there’s a sense of freedom from life while you camp.
I remember as a kid going camping with my family, aunts, uncles, cousins. We called it family camp. We would rent out about five campsites all together. Us kids would run around taking each other on ‘snipe’ hunts. The dice would come out and we’d play 10,000.
There was one year, we went around the entire camp ground and invited random strangers to come play a game of spoons with us. When the parents returned from the lake, there we were. Their children along with about twenty adults, standing around five picnic tables pushed together end to end in the best game of spoons ever.
I have a lot of great memories camping.
One of the things I love most is after a full day of activities down at the lake, and after dinner has been eaten and put away in bear-safe containers, gathering around the fire.
There’s magic there. I’m not sure if it’s because of the conversations, the friendly banter. We would reminisce on memories from past camping trips. It could have merely been just unwinding from reality; watching the flames dance their erotic dance, licking and lapping each other in the darkened sky.
One of our trips, we were so enthralled by the fire, the bottom of my brother’s shoes melted. No one even noticed until he started dancing around and kicking off his shoes.
Camping is magical, and I miss it. I miss making the memories, reminiscing on the past. I miss the escape from reality, even if it’s just for the weekend. I miss the way my clothes would smell like campfire for days.
I just miss camping.