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Thursday, September 17, 2020

Birthday campout

Mason turned 11 on Tuesday after Labor Day, and the wife planned a bash down at the pond (where there are a couple of pavilions, a swing set, and a large grassy area for kids to run loose in). Then she suggested I take the Starflyer down there and camp with Mason.

Hey, why not? I’ve been wanting to get out, and would have if it was just the adults. The whole thing about campgrounds, as I’ve said before, is kids take off and hang out with other kids. It’s awesome, unless there happens to be a pandemic going on. But if it’s just us…

It just popped up here, I swear…

The two-track down to the pond can be treacherous, but this time the washout was all on one side. I kept to the other side, and got it where I needed it. There’s not a 30A connection, so I couldn’t run the A/C, but there’s 15A connections and it only got hot for a few hours during the afternoon. I had fans, and zipped up the screen covers on the sunny side. It was nice and comfortable by bedtime. Sizzle opined that this was more glamping than camping; he had a cabin tent for his boys and strung a hammock for himself. I pointed out that sleeping on a mat on the ground is fine when you’re 30, even 40. At 50… not so much. At 60, forget it.

In the mornings, it was chilly enough that warming up a kettle on the inside stove was a welcome way to get the day started. I keep a French press in the camper for coffee, and Sizzle decided this wasn’t a bad way to camp after a cup or two. I also warm up a second kettle to put in the pump pot—so I have both hot and cold water at the sink for washing.

The birthday party was Sunday afternoon, and several relatives came down to join the fun. I pulled the Porta-Potti out of its cabinet and designated the camper as “the ladies room” for the afternoon. It’s a pretty low sit, so most of the women didn’t try it out. But the niece’s daughter found it perfect, and used it often. (I usually put it in the walkway at night, so nobody has to traipse into the woods in the dark, and it got used that way as well.)

Since Monday was a holiday, Skylar and the niece’s son stayed in the camper with Mason and me. The boys gave me the big end, Skylar got the drop-down bed (in which the dinette table sits on props and holds up the mattress) and the other boys grabbed the small end (and the bunk light with the fan… little rats).

I find that tearing down takes a lot longer than setup. Maybe it’s because my help evaporates, or maybe because I’m reluctant to admit it’s over. But Mason has a 5-day weekend (fall break) at the end of September. I’ve already taken vacation days—so if the weather cooperates, we’ll be back. Hopefully, the wife will join us this time.

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