Sunday, August 14, 2011

camping, the extended version

So, I attempted camping again.  Maybe I'm wrong, but I suspect the Camping Gods are trying to send me a message.
My good friend Cheri decided to host a girl's night at our favourite campground, in her fifth wheel.  We call it the Taj Mahal.  True camping happens in a tent, with an outhouse if you're lucky.  The Taj has two bathrooms, a big TV, full kitchen, two's the way to camp, trust me.
Sara and I drove out to meet up with Cheri on Thursday night.  It was a great drive, in Sara's happy new car.  The rain had started, but we figured a little rain wouldn't hurt us!  We are tough chicks! (Yes, we were in a cute little white car, with a teeny little white doggie, headed to the Taj Mahal of camping...but tough!!)
Everything went well until we were on the long dirt road to the campground.  The rain had turned it into a long mud road.  The little car slid and slipped, and it felt a lot like riding a slip 'n slide.  Puppy was whining.  We should have listened to her.
We made it to the campsite, and all was well.  Cheri's idea of camping food is amazing....she made us quinoa, and rouladen filled with asparagus.  Yummy!!  For dessert, strawberries and mascarpone on shortbread.  Double yummy!
After a movie and some wine, we all settled in for a good sleep, listening to the rain on the roof.  Ahhhh.....great life!
The next morning, Sara answered a knock at the door (in her cupcake jammies!!!) to bad news.  The road had been washed out.  As in, we were trapped in the campground.  Possibly for a week or more.  With no cell phone service, one change of clothes, a deck of cards, and enough food and wine to keep us happy for a month.
Sara and Cheri hiked the 6 km to see the damage, and came back shaken.  The road was gone for approximately 300 m.  Where there should have been gravel and road was now a fast moving creek.  The banks were continually caving in.
Nothing kills a camping mood faster than finding out you CAN'T leave.  All three of us became very twitchy, very fast.  Fortunately, we are great friends, so there was no bloodshed.  And did I mention the wine?!
The second night, we played cards and talked the way only women do.  Some topics we covered:
-best sweat pants
-pubic trimming trends
-honesty in friendship
-relationships -the good, the bad, the ugly
-favourite hummus flavours

We also got it into our heads that we NEEDED to go check on the road situation, and Cheri seemed certain that perhaps, just maybe, her Beloved would be waiting on the other side of the Great Divide, ready to rescue us.  Sara (our sober friend!) gamely drove us out through the mud and rain to see what progress had been made on repairing the road.

No progress.
No road crews.
No knight in shining armour on a white horse.

Cheri took this all very personally.  She raged at the government, the road crews, the highway department, and the campground caretaker.  She was truly a woman to be reckoned with.  Sara, for some insane reason, tried to explain rationally why we might not see repair crews out at 10 pm in the rain.  She pointed out that the knight in shining armour would have no way of knowing we expected him at that precise moment.  She pointed out the mud, the rain, the deteriorating weather.  Nothing could sway Cheri from her belief that the world was conspiring against her.
We went back to the Taj and crawled into bed, convinced that we were now camping for the long term.
The next morning, our luck changed.  Yay!  Other campers had gone to check on things, and the road!  It was being built!  Highway workers were saying "Everyone should be out THIS AFTERNOON!!" Woo hoo!!!!
We packed everything up, super fast, and got totally excited and worked up to leave....and then we sat.  And sat.  And sat, until 4 pm, when we finally got into the little white car and headed home.  The highway workers followed us out in their truck, which seemed ridiculous until we saw the road....the temporary road was fabulous (apparently it would last until the next rainfall, but no later) but the muddy section was beyond belief.  There was a grader pushing it all off to one side, but for most of the road we were just sliding around, hoping to stay out of the ditch.  The little car has little tires (imagine!) and the mud was scraping the bottom of the car.  Sara was a very brave driver, and we just pretended we were in some sort of mud bog competition.  When we finally made the highway, Sara wanted to kiss the ground, but we were too tired.
I like camping, I really do.  But I think I'm done for this summer. 


Anonymous said...

Seriously...1 word for you...HOTEL.

Buffy :)

koreen (aka: winn) said...

If you're camping in the Taj Mahal, you can withstand any "hardship". ;) Though the thing that gets me is not being able to contact the "outside world" and let your family know what's going on. That would suck. Glad you made it out alive.

wendy said...

ahh yes we heard about this, we went to that campground last year and it was a dark and stormy night then too, that was when we vowed never to go back until the road was repaired it was really REALLY bad last summer!
Glad you survivied!
camping really is fun I promise!