Thank you Jessica and Laura for your continued support! Camp On!
And now a word..or two, from Jess.....
Another summer has come and gone with my very special gaggle of people. I wouldn't want to be in the company of anyone else for summer vacation then my BFF and OUR 5 kids. We started camping at Burlingame umpteen years ago with our folks, and have continued the tradition with our own band of misfits. Every winter begins the countdown and the questions from my girls “mamma, how much longer till we go camping?” ……or to my BFF--”Pearl, what camping items did you find this week?” My BFF’s name is Laura but I call her Pearl LOL—it references my grandmother and her best friend, but that is a tale for another blog.
This year our camping trip seemed to creep up way to slowly, but finally it was upon us. As excited as we all were, a few weeks before our annual trip, my BFF delivered devastating news to me…. She would have to LEAVE CAMP EARLY! GASP ‘THE HORRA’ Her oldest had football practice. Damn kids ruin everything!! We have a set routine. An order of things done. A set way to begin and end our camping journey, so as NOT to anger the camping gods. It seems that we miss something every year which results in cracked windshields, trips to the ER with hot cops, postage stamp sized campgrounds, torrential down pours, hurricanes, car alarms that refuse to shut off, or tarps a-smoldering. There is a long laundry list of camping mishaps for us and each memory makes us giggle.
This year started off on the wrong foot! As I mentioned the camping gods…. They were already plotting against us just for the fact that my BFF had to leave early. Now, one of the other rituals that we have is to meet at a specific time. Then, 45 minutes AFTER that specified time we all manage to get to our meeting spot. Once we are on the road, and then turn back once---twice---sometimes three times for things we have forgotten, we begin our journey. I am the driver and Laura is the ‘navigator’ and yes I use that term very loosely. As we listen to the kids bicker and argue and fight and laugh, Laura and I reminisce of old times and ponder what will go wrong this year. This is the routine. This is what did NOT happen this year as we took 2 cars (dun duh duuuummm) AND Laura left a full 5 hours after we did. There was no hope for us to make it through the week without the camping gods having their revenge. Arriving at our normal halfway spot in Middletown Connecticut, i felt the void of half of my camp clan missing. Not even my pick me up DD coffee was oddly not the same. But….drive on I did. Once I made it to Burlingame, I set up camp with minimal yelling for the kids to help me. Then off to dinner and the store to pick up supplies. FINALLY my BFF showed up around 8, just in time for her to fall asleep around the campfire! And so ends our first day.
The rest of the ‘week’ was filled with new friends, (thanks Laurie and Craig) lots and lots of rain, a trip to Wal-Mart in the middle of the night with my love to stop the Titanic (aka my tent) from sinking. It is amazing what tarps keep out (the rain), and what they also keep in (smelly feet and kid stench…oh, and body heat and.... tooting). This year brought new adventures to the Point Judith Lighthouse, Bagels and More, the Umbrella Factory, Misquamicut go karts, and a Chinese buffet (please don’t judge). If you are looking to lose yourself in jewelry, clothing, cool nick-knacks or a bamboo maze—The Umbrella Factory is the place to go. For a few hours of fun off the beach, the go karts and bumper boats are a blast! This trip was also filled with the old standbys. The beaches of Westerly, Charlestown and Galilee, Frisbee tosses, metal detecting, Watch Hill for the carousel, ice cream and our annual trip to Romeo’s shop.
|...the camp tradition will live on!|
And of course, the most important thing of all…. Memories made around the campfire. I was even grown up enough this year to let others light the campfire. Between the s’mores, roasted starbursts and laughs, not a moment will be forgotten. Children falling asleep in the chairs by the fire, marshmallows flying all around for a marshmallow war and 007 trying to make an appearance with lighter fluid. Folks, my love is more dashing then 007, but should not try and get a job as a special effects master in Hollywood. With boys being boys and trying bug zappers on themselves, wood that didn't want to light, rain forcing us under a pavilion for a lantern lit game of taboo….. the laughs were never gone for long. This is my place. This is home to me. And every year I spend here with my BFF, my love, our kids, or our folks that come for the day, it always leaves the promise of a lifetime of memories. My countdown to next year has already begun. Only 343 days to go! Laura…let the shopping begin.