I'm taking my family camping in about a month. We tried this for the first time recently, and while we forgot the rain-preventer-covering-the-tent-thing, we did a respectable job.
And that's saying a lot, since the people from whom we borrowed the tent, had no idea how to set it up and lost the instructions.
Apparently, we're not the only amateur campers.
It didn't rain (thank God), but I had other worries on my mind. I was terrified a bear was going to jump on our tent and eat my babies like Junior Mints.
So I remained awake listening to cracking branches, rustling leaves and what I belived to be footsteps. Bear footsteps. Big ones.
This was probably unecessary worry, since we staked our tent on the lawn of our friend's cabin. To say we were "camping" is a far reach since we had 2,000 square feet of convenience at our disposal.
But still, we were lying there like fucking bait for wolves, bears and other evil creatures that growl and howl. We looked like mouth-watering burritos rolled up in our sleeping bags.
My anxiety surprised me a little because I'm not necessarily a city girl. I attended keggers in the hayfields growing up. I've peed behind bushes on the way home from parties.
So you see, I'm not averse to nature, I've just never slept in it.
Unless you count the time my boyfriend and I pitched a tent and I wrote, "You're cute" with my fingers on the tent. I had no idea tents were so tempermental. Apparently you're not allowed to touch them?
It rained. No, it poured. I woke up all pissed off thinking someone was throwing water at my face. I was barely awake before I was yelling, "What the fuck! This is stupid. I have a dry bed IN A WARM HOUSE and I'm choosing to sleep on fucking mud? This is ridiculous...."
To which my boyfriend replied, "You're the fucking idiot that touched the goddamn tent. Oh my GOD, you are dumb."
All the other campers were a little annoyed at our domestic dispute at 3 am. I know this because someone yelled, "Either shut the fuck up or leave. NOW!"
We left. Covered in mud, mosquito bites and the bitter taste of a break up.
I can't believe I'm going to do it again, but the faces on my daughters when they woke up in a tent for the first time was priceless. They couldn't believe they survived a night in the "wilderness". They walked with their chests puffed out a little more, proud of their courage.
And I have to say, there was something about the trees and breeze that filled me with peace when my fear stepped aside and allowed it in.
Besides, since I've already experience the worst camping trip in the world, everything else is bound to trump it. Jellystone, here we come!