Thursday, August 18, 2011

Camping 101.

We're back from our two-day camping extravaganza, and still unwinding from the ordeal trip. I've got tons of pictures to share, but wouldn't you know it - my computer died the day before we left for our trip, and all I have on it right now are typing/internet capabilities. I am without photo editing power and frankly, I feel like I've lost a limb. So you get yet ANOTHER post without pictures and I don't know how long we can keep this up. I feel like sooner or later I'm going to run out of things to say...

Ah, who am I kidding? Me? Run out of things to say? NEVER.

I think that we had a great time camping, until the girls hit their no-sleep limit as we were packing up to come home this morning and just started flat-out yelling at us.

(I would insert the picture here if I could.)

Nissa's tantrum was unintelligible, but oddly enough, Inara's tantrum sounded like, "I WANT TO GO HOME TO SEE MY Mii's!!!"

Which is how you know your child has been playing too much Wii of late. Ahem.

I'd say that on the whole, Nissa did far better with being outdoors for two days straight than Inara did. Nissa basically sat in dirt for 48 hours and rubbed detritus all over her legs - she was in heaven, with nobody to stop her from eating, playing, and bathing in the underbrush. She definitely takes after Yousuf's side of the family - who don't bathe in dirt, but really don't mind getting a little dirty. After all, that's what camping is all about, right?

According to Inara and I - WRONG.

I don't know what Inara thought camping was all about, and perhaps I should have prepared her a little better. I have had a whopping TWO camping trips under my belt, both of which came as a shock to my system (but I trusted my very experienced husband to get me through them, preferably alive).  But of course, Inara hasn't had the benefit of experience to rely on. Some of her more choice phrases over the course of the two days included:

(as we were driving to our camp site): "Gosh. There's a lot of leaves here. I don't know if I'm going to like this."

(as we were hiking): "These twigs keep GETTING IN MY WAY."

(at every breakfast): "The only way I would do this again is if we had roasted marshmallows. All the time."

One of the reasons we picked the campground we did was because it was only 45 minutes away from home (so that we could run home again in case our first family camp didn't go as well as planned), and also - the main attraction - was that there was a beach. All Inara wanted to do was go somewhere to swim. Because as we all know, leaves are just weird and clearly not a normal part of the camping experience.

So we get to the park and wouldn't you know it - but there was a huge sign declaring for all the world to see:


You remember that freak storm that I wrote about in my last post? Well, the devastating effects not only blew up (literally) in our house...but they followed us all the way to the lake. Apparently, the storm dumped so much water into the sewer systems that they just overflowed into the lake, and well, that's a lot of yucky bacteria floating around.

Because my bladder is that powerful, guys.

Inara BLEW HER NUT. And Issie soon followed, because she has to do whatever Inara does even if she has no idea why she is doing it.

We managed to talk Inara down off the proverbial ledge, explaining that we could still do fun things while camping. Actually, I left the explaining to Yousuf and his parents because what the heck do I know about camping? They managed to convince her that roasting marshmallows, hiking, and exploring the playgrounds could be just as much fun as you know, AWESOME BEACH FUN (while I, rather wisely I might add, kept my mouth shut and nodded pleasantly in agreement).

And we did have fun - thanks to Yousuf's parents guiding us through the trip. We definitely couldn't have camped without their many years of experience (and their RV! Talk about luxury!). Other than the fact that every single park employee that we met was absolutely useless, we had a fantastic time.

Oh, and the skunks. I could have lived without the skunks roaming around our campsite after dark.

And also the coyotes. Which never bothered us but FREAKED ME RIGHT OUT.

And also the leaves. KIDDING.

On our last evening camping, we decided to stroll along the beach just to see what it looked like. I'm glad that we did because when we got there it was full of people! And a lifeguard! In spite of the park employees telling us that there was no swimming. Remember how I told you they were useless?

Yeah, that.

So we ended up swimming anyway - and all was right in Inara's world. She was in her element, wading and splashing and getting her shorts full of algae (blech). A girl a little older than Inara came into the water beside her and she was so giddy that she glossed over her usual introductory pleasantries, getting right down to business so as to not waste any precious beach-frolicking time:

"Hello! My name is Inara, and this is my Papa. He tickles a lot, but you don't have to worry about him. He's not dangerous."


To her credit, the girl was only marginally weirded out. Until Inara followed that little gem with,

"Also, I have a three-part question for you, if you want to be friends. What is your name, how old are you, and how far out into the water are you going?"

Like I said - she was totally in her element.

Pictures to come as soon as my computer recovers. In the meantime, I am going to make sweet, sweet love to my shower - how I missed thee, running water!

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