In the spur of the moment, hubby and I decided we were going to camp last weekend just to reconnect with nature. It was supposed to be a simple getaway but as all getaways go, nothing is ever simple.
Take for example the grocery shopping. Since it was camping, we needed to get beer and wine, some bratwurst, bread, s’mores, water, wood, fire starters (we live in Washington – all the wood is wet!), among other things. With the gas and ice that we needed to purchase on the morning itself, our total cost was about to come out more expensive than the 2-night weekend we had staying in a hotel in Ocean Shores!
So lesson #1: Whoever said camping was cheap has never ever done it yet.
Finally the weekend came and we got up… late! We initially planned to take off at 6AM but our late night had us sleeping until 9! When we got up, we still needed to move our stuff to the truck and finally took off at 12NN. By 2PM, we reached Enumclaw and asked the office about camping spots. Mr. Forest Service helped us out by pointing to FR 70 as the primary camping spot. Lo and behold, EVERY SPOT WAS TAKEN. We drove around FR 70 and moved to FR 73 for 4 hours and couldn’t find an empty spot. It was dusty and hot and we were getting restless already.
Lesson #2: Who knew the great outdoors could be so crowded? So get up and get out on Friday or super early Saturday at the latest.
Finally, we found an empty spot at the edge of a cliff. It was a really exposed area (according to my hubby), but it was the only spot left.
We checked it out and stayed for a bit. It was 5PM already and we were ready to just settle with that spot. The thing was, the wind was starting to pick up. Hubby said that it will be harder in the evening, when it gets really windy. Given we were at the edge of a cliff, it might not be a fun night at all.
So we decided to go further down the road for possibly more camping spots. Take note we were driving up a gravel path, just one-lane, and at the side of a Rocky Mountain. We saw a patch of green and a fire pit, so we decided to stop and scope the place. As soon as my hubby jumped off the truck, he jumped right back in. Apparently, a swarm of wasps flew towards him even before his feet hit the ground, prompting him to zoom back inside the car! Finally, we decided to just take the spot by the cliff. We turned the car around to drive back… only to have our spot grabbed RIGHT BEFORE OUR EYES! Oh what luck….
Lesson #3: If you find a spot, be content. There is no better spot than what you have already.
Feeling a little defeated and overall just tired, we went back to the city. Once we got home, I had a nasty headache that wouldn’t go away. I had a fever and needed to take a pill before sleeping that night. The hubby also had a bad case of allergies from the dusty roads we drove on so he also went to bed sick. At that moment, I wouldn’t trade my comfy bed and pillows for a sleeping bag under the stars. I’m pretty sure if we slept near dusty roads that evening, we would wake up deathly sick and would have the toughest time getting home.
Lesson #4: It’s probably cliche because it’s true: there is a reason for everything, and it’s all for your wellbeing.
We’ll try camping again in the next few weeks. I might pick up another lesson or two – who knows, right? Hopefully though we do get our camping on this time around. Stay tuned.