19 August 2017

what happened when we went camping:

What happened when we went camping: 

(Not all camping. Just this particular camping.) 

We forgot the dog. It's not our dog, but J. was supposed to dog sit for some neighbors and the days got mixed up. We were already out of network and 90 minutes out of town in crazy Friday afternoon traffic when he saw the text asking if they could drop the dog off Saturday morning. He sent a response on the wifi at the ranger station, but we didn’t know until later whether they would be able to find someone else.

We forgot the rain fly for the tent. The weekend before, a tree dripped sap on it camping out at B.’s parents’ house, so we left it out to clean it, and there it stayed, uncleaned, during a busy week and while we packed everything for this weekend. I thought of it soon after we left the ranger station, and J. and E. and I speculated on whether this would mean sleeping in the car or curled up on the floor of E. and B.’s tent. 

Fortunately, when we got to the camp site, we found that B. had packed a 9’x9’ tarp that E. picked up once on sale at rei, and when tied just so over the tent, it blocked all the rain and gave a beautiful view of the lake. It was more exposed to wind, but the wind didn’t get that bad in the trees. 

We forgot to fill the car up with gas. This we also remembered around the ranger station, having passed many, many gas stations between Gone West and the depths of the woods. We were headed two hours up into the mountains, with the nearest gas station 30 miles away on dirt roads. It was risky.

We planned to drive back out through State City so we could stop at the nearest gas station (adding an hour to the drive), but when we hit the intersection on the way home, the car said we had 70 miles of gas left, and the sign said we had 47 miles to the first town on the direct route back to Gone West, so we chanced it and headed straight toward home. B. and E. followed us in case we ran out of gas.

It turns out that when a Subaru says 70 miles of gas left after driving 30 miles of dirt road, it still has many miles of lovely paved road left in it, especially when that lovely paved road is mostly downhill. The gauge still said it had 70 miles to go after the 47 mile drive. 

And then, to top off the weekend, B. stepped in a hole that turned out to be a rusting culvert and it gouged a 2-3 inch long gash in his leg, about half an inch deep. I tried to wash it out, and someone who works as a medical assistant in an orthopedist's office (and, more importantly, is a mom of teenagers) came from a neighboring campsite came to look at it, and the consensus was that we needed a real doctor, not butterfly bandages and tap water. 

The nearest urgent care was 2.5 hours away in State City, and it was closed. The nearest emergency room was 2 hours away.

Math problem: if you leave your campsite at 6 pm to drive to an emergency room 2 hours away, and it takes 3.5 hours to be seen and cleaned and stitched at the emergency room and you still need to fill up on gas and snacks because no one has eaten dinner, and it takes 2 hours to drive back, what time will you get back to your campsite?

The answer is 2:12 am. 

Meanwhile, sitting in the waiting room in a little country hospital, we read about what happened in Charlottesville. 

There are actual Nazis marching unashamed in our streets, making KKK and Nazi salutes, and the president of this country can’t bring himself to denounce them. He says there are “two sides.”

Let’s be clear: what happened in Charlottesville is not the fault of people who oppose Nazis and the KKK. There are not two equally justified sides. There is one side that espouses hatred, and that is one side that opposes hatred based on race, gender, or religion. 

Pick your side.