Monday, August 20, 2012

#107. or, no shirt, no shoes, no service


  A couple weekends back we had a family reunion/ camping weekend of sorts. The weather each day was fabulous while each night, thunder and lightening shook the skies while rain blasted down in threatening fashion. The noise of that, echoing about our camper through the 2 inch walls, keeping us from getting a decent nights sleep, was in a small part diminished by the knowledge that my uncle and his family were riding out these storms, a half dozen sites over in a tent. Each morning I half expected to find them washed away with only a trail of sleeping bags and camp supplies to lead us to where they were. But each morning, as I picked my way around the mud holes and soaked grass in my flip flops, they were always still there, in true resilient fashion.

 Come morning though, the sun was out once again to dry things out. It was beautiful.  I didn’t wear socks the whole time.  That’s something that’s become somewhat of a marker of the success of the weekend for me. While I don’t have the most attractive toes in the world, I’m certain they’ve seen more daylight in the 4 years or so I am, past 40, than all the years prior. I also spent some time with my shirt off and my fish belly white stomach leading me around the campground.  Now that I think about it, the older I get, the less clothes I wear, the more comfortable I seem to be. Considering how much time I spent in just shorts and flip flops, I’m thinking by the time I’m 55, I’m not even going to need to pack clothes to go camping for the weekend. Of course, even if you can man up and cook bacon on an open fire in the nude, chopping wood without any clothes on is giving me a rather unsettling mental picture.

  The worst part of the weekend was the lack of phone service. At any given time, you could spot someone wandering through the campground, cell phone in the air, staring at the screen, willing the number of service bars to climb high enough to push through all those emails, sitting somewhere in limbo until there was enough cell service to receive them. Well, OK, mostly me.

  All in all, I was a pretty awesome weekend. We sat around the campfire and talked about old times. My little, pre-teen cousins all giggled with school girl excitement (because they were ALL little school girls) when I got in line with them to get a glittery red, kissy-lips tattoo. I think that was some sort of unofficial  initiation into their club and I wore those lips with pride. We went for walks, and visited the lake, which happened to be one of the few salt water lakes in our province. I couldn't help but wonder if sharks would live in that lake. I played some ladder golf. That's a game where you toss a set of golf balls attached to either end of a cord onto a stand-up ladder affair for points. I desperately wanted to get the blue balls because, of course, there's an awesome joke in that. But alas, it never happened.



  We played a bit of a game of football. Old squad vs. the kids, and got our butts handed to us. It seems I'm not really the star receiver I imagine myself being. I also came home from that with a few bruises I didn't even discover until a couple days later. We probably would have won if i didn't have a bum shoulder. .......um ya, I'm going with that.

  Something else we discovered is that my aunts and uncles may still be too close to some of the stories that my grand-father started to actually believe they happened.

  Sunday morning, my mom and my uncle spent the morning in the camp kitchen cooking up pancakes, sausages and bacon for the whole crew. Which while wonderful of them, I know was a bit of a hellish job, as the sun beat down into the kitchen, the fire in the massive wood stove had to be roaring to keep the heat high enough to properly cook anything. Sort of a Hell's Kitchen, Camping Edition.

  ...............I was glad there was a big bottle of Baileys to add to the coffee while I sat in the shade and watched them. And bacon.....plenty of bacon.

32 comments:

  1. Despite my distaste for camping ( bugs, snakes, lack of clean plumbing ) I do love some family time and bacon. I notice when we take the Jeep to the river that the younger men are fully clothed and the older one's are shirtless with flip flops and crack showing. Must be a rite of passage.

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    1. I suppose that it may be a right of passage of sorts. Maybe I should add that to my list of things to pass along to my kids as they get older.

      I don't think my crack was showing though? Maybe that's yet to come?

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    2. Fortunately, it was other men, not mine, who forgot to "just say no, crack is not whack!"

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  2. Sounds entirely idyllic. But that weather is the most amazing part.

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    1. Yes, the weather was as good as it could be. Yet, each night those storms would just roll on in.

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  3. That was one thing my Dad always told me, never cook bacon without a shirt on. Great post Superman.

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    1. Your father was obviously a very wise man.

      About that cape thing. I've mentioned it to the Lady in red on a couple of occasions and it seems she's taken it upon herself to portray me to the world as some sort of superhero. Who am I to argue with the Lady?

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    2. Right now, there is no cape picture. However, as this -inacape thing seems to take on more of a life of it's own, I've been thinking that a picture might be in order. I am considering it.

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  4. Mrs. Chatterbox thinks camping is checking into a hotel without room service.

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    1. While I've never actually had room service, we do our share of hotel vacations as well. Each has it's good points, but as for the camping, we're hardly roughing it in our trailer. The bed is larger than the one we sleep on at home and we ran the A/C all weekend.

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  5. Lol, I absolutely burst out laughing when you you described the people trying to get cell coverage wandering about... and then how you said it was actually mainly you. I can SO picture that! Also, do we get to see a picture of the glittery red kissy-lips tattoo???? Surely you took a picture? Lol.... WANT!

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    1. I actually thought that I had a picture of those lips to post along with this story, but when I looked back, it was nowhere to be found. Sorry.

      It was funny, we would go for a walk and you would wander through a spot with service and anyone packing a phone would get excited as their phone went off with old messages coming in.

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    2. Turns out my cousin had a picture and sent it on to me. I updated the post with it :)

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    3. LOVE your tat! ;-) ... that's just pretty cute lol. You're very dashing with it on :)

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  6. The camping posts make me more than ready for some camping. I think we are aiming to try and get out for some fall camping in October or early November. Now I can't wait.

    You know, I think that is true about the clothing thing...Not the no-shirt thing, but I am finding that I am MUCH more comfortable in warm climates in less attire. I have had to sit in on two meetings now today and last Thursday that I thought we were getting ready to hang meat it was so cold, and I just can't take it! I just keep telling myself I am being prepared for a Pacific climate. :)

    Also loved your description there in the first paragraph of the storms and the relatives that might or might not have washed away. Classic.

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    1. I would really like to do one more trip before winter. September is already getting a bit cold for swimming in a lake but we could still sit around a fire and visit. After September though, it's too close to winter and all of our things have to be put away until next year.

      I kind of liked laying awake and you could see the lightening flash through the windows, then off the seconds until the thunder. Still glad we weren't in a tent though.

      I'm with you all the way on the Pacific climate! Everyone was complaining about the heat and looking for shade, but I was loving every second of it. We have too many days of winter to not be taking advantage of the few nice days we get! :)

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    2. You posted a sparkly, kissy-lips tattoo pic!!! LOVE IT!!

      I am often the 'oddball' in a group because I can NOT adapt to everyone's incessant need to have it subzero. I like heat. I don't mind sweating. The sun feels glorious on my bare shoulders - I'll take a hot summer day over goosebump weather any day!

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  7. Do you think the cooks had coffee in their cups? This Auntie kept them well supplied with cool ones!

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  8. That sounds like so much fun! When I was little, we used to meet up with family and go camping. I always had such a blast.

    And I adore you for getting the kissy lips tattoo!

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    1. It was a lot of fun.

      I actually got an email just minutes ago from my cousin who does have a picture of that glitter tattoo. When she mails it to me, I'll update the post with it.

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  9. I wish that my family reunions had Baileys.

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  10. Ahhh, life is good up there in tractorland, and you look so very cool with your sparkly red lips! I'm betting the kids all adore you! Glad you are finding some time to kick back and relax, how are the crops doing?

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    1. Hi Josie. There was four little girl, 2nd cousins there and they were always coming over to hang out at our site or wanting me to come play a game or go for a walk with them or something. I like kids. That's mostly the reason that I drive the bus on field trips and things.

      It's getting really busy here. Rain for a good part of the summer kept us out of the field and now I'm trying to make some hay for winter feed and the harvest is right on top of us. The list of things to do as we get closer to winter is growing. But then, that's what happens every year. Try to get as much of that list checked off before the snow comes.

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  11. I can barely survive a yearly afternoon with my family. I can't imagine spending an entire weekend together. Especially camping.

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    1. It wasn't so bad. The camping actually meant that you could go for walks and do your own things as well as the family stuff. I'd recommend it.

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  12. As long as there is bacon...there is life! Sounds like fun! I haven't been camping in a couple years, and I miss it!

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    1. Sounds like you're long overdue Dan!

      Don't forget the bacon.

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  13. Sounds like a lovely trip. But the bacon in the nude thing is just a bad idea. I was impressed when my boyfriend once poured me hot coffee in the buff. That takes balls! Yes, I know I will probably get dragged off the stage with a huge cane for that line.

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    1. With his junk? That IS impressive!

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