Little Sarcophagus in the Big Woods
We've made it home from camping in one piece - sweaty, cranky, grimy, funky, but still intact, and I consider that a victory.
Our cabin was cozy (if by cozy you mean an airless tomb). When we first arrived, I thought the cabin was so cute that I was ready to move in. There were two beds in a loft, and one bed below the loft with plenty of space for the baby's portable crib. To the right was a banquette table with rustic bench, and there were three little windows adorned with simple curtains. We even had electricity, so I thought we were set.
And then came the first night's sleep and I started thinking seriously about sleeping in the car. Remember how I so flippantly said that it was supposed to be hot? Yeah, that came back to bite me since it really was as hot as The Face of the Sun. I just laid in the dark, listening to myself sweat, trying not to stick to the bed. The Boy was next to me in the bed beneath the loft, since he was terrified of climbing the ladder, and every few minutes I would push one of his sticky limbs off of me.
On my 3 am stroll to the bathroom, while realizing just how dark the night really is and praying that I would not be attacked by a foraging raccoon, I realized that it had cooled off a bit, but not enough to relieve the humid oppression of our cabin. I thought about spending the rest of the night in the bathroom.
It was very easy to pick out the experienced campers. They were the ones who showed up in the air conditioned trailers, complete with satellite dishes and portable outhouses. They were the ones with Mimi and PawPaw's Home on Wheels airbrushed on their spare tire covers, and the hot pepper lights strung up around their site. They were the ones with 8'x10' carpets in front of their doors and the names of their grandchildren on a little welcome sign stuck into the ground by their reclining, upholstered lawn chairs. They were the ones I wanted to pay handsomely for a few hours of sleep in the blessed coolness of their bunks.
But the whole trip was not completely joyless. The kids frolicked in the pool, ate enough junk to rot their teeth, rode on carousels, roller coasters, bumper boats, and antique cars. They spent evening at their grandparents' campfire, got washed in tiny little dishpans of warm water, and peed off the side of the cabin porch. All hallmarks of a great family vacation. We were with people we love dearly, and it was sad to leave them and return to work and therapy and laundry and life. Of course, the air-conditioned van really helped us to get over all that.
So now we are home and scrubbed and cool and bored. No campfires, no s'mores, no dinners on tree stumps, no more peeing off of the porch. I think we'll end up doing this again, except next year I'm introducing myself to Mimi and PawPaw on the first day.