It’s been more than 2 years since we went away on a camping holiday. The pandemic, obviously, and the associated closure of the state parks. And before that there were the climate change related wild fires. Our tent had languished — for a long time in our storage unit, then more recently in our emergency go kit.
That kit we finally got around to putting together as we approached the last election. Never mind the earthquake and wild fires potential, the threat of red hatted Nazis plus wild fires that actually started to threaten places not far from us is what finally got me to prioritize that enough, and my wife was patient enough to support that activity. I mean, obviously it was something we should have done before, but we finally got around to it then.
So after two years of rest we finally dragged it from its slumber. And thankfully, apart from smelling a bit like Olympia’s harbour front / downtown buildings (which do have a distinctive smell – the old ones at least)… Well, that and the delicious scent of meths* – it seems fine. It’s getting on for probably nearly 20 years old and has traveled all over Europe with us.
It’s kind of an old friend.
And here we sit. We’re camping just over an hour away from home in the Kanascat-Palmer state park, which was one of the few parks in which hit the combo of at least feeling rural, having lots of tree cover and being near plenty of nice walks that wasn’t also hours and hours away. Since we’re just here for a few days – getting our sea-legs back with not being at home and reminding ourselves that we do actually like camping.
It’s funny – I’ve done the odd day trip to see Nikki for work as we all got vaccinated, but this was the first time we’d really gone away from home. And I did actually feel a vague nameless anxiety about going out and staying away from the house.
===== Back home.
But I’m glad we did.
We hiked up Little Si, a 1500 ft climb, then – having claimed that we were going to ease ourselves back into walking, then the next day we swore we’d take it easy and added 5 miles and another climb on the Mount Sheppard trailhead. It felt really good to be out in nature, sleeping under canvas (well, nylon). And pleasingly the tent and our associated gubbins has all survived just fine.
It did act to remind us that we really, really do want to be out in the countryside. we both feel much better there…
Now it’s just how to we make that happen.
In at-home news, we’ve been clearing out our storage unit and preparing for an epic garage sale. Lord knows what will sell and what won’t. We’re leaving some stuff to the gods (like my oscilloscopes, which I kind of want to keep but also think I should get rid of, so we’ll see if someone makes a decent offer for them).
It’s actually not so much the getting rid of stuff that’s hard, but the unexpected pictures of my dad, the bits of my childhood, they’re harder. More emotionally draining.
Also, I still have no fricking idea where I’m going to put some things. Like, where does the reel-to-reel tape player live? Where do the tapes live? I have no clue.
We’ve also exceeded the capacity of both the CD and DVD DJ cases.
*Which Kathryn printers our we may want to not shout –or maybe we should use its American name (Denatured Alcohol).