When I speak of camping out one should remember that I am over 60 years of age and so what a 15 year old, a 25 year old or even a 40 year old considers camping may vary greatly. When I was a young girl of about 12 years, I remember vividly going out camping. It was one of my favourite things to do as a child. The first time, it was a church camp. I would estimate there were about 50 or so girls at our campground and we were to stay there for a week. I was filled with excited anticipation. My first solo experience without mom or dad or my big sister or brothers. What I hadn’t counted on; however, was that my parents meant all along but only revealed to me the day before, that I was to bring my 2 little sisters and I had the responsibility of being in charge of them. Oh well, how hard would that be, I figured and so we set out for the campgrounds at some beach not too far from home. Dad and Mom dropped us off and we scampered to sign up. Naturally I was assigned to bunk in the same tent as my two little sisters, my younger cousin (you guessed it, she was under my wing too) and 2 or 3 other young girls. We had a lovely large tent and went about making it homey by placing our sleeping bags close to each other, stowing our little flashlights under our pillows and places our few articles of clothes in a neat pile nearby. We were all happy and filled with giggling. Before long a loud whistle summoned us outside to make a circle around the main area which would later act as our large nightly bonfire. Instructions were given and details ironed out as to strict rules and so on but the one item that caught my attention is that every morning we would be inspected and judged for the prettiest tent area using our own imaginations. I was agog with ideas but we had very little to work with. It seemed other young girls had been to this camp before and so they happened to have the cutest little tidbits to decorate. I was only momentarily distressed so I rummaged around for my chance to show up those richer non Catholic girls (did I mention Protestants were invited too? we were such a welcoming church family…????) On the second last day our tent won hands down. Mind you we had no toothpaste left for the last 2 days since that was our “icing” that created cute little symbols and icons showing that we were the First Class Wilderness Girls of the Camp. Those were the days.
Today my idea of camping is arriving at an RV Resort in our rather posh Class A Winnebago…..king size bed; 2 flat screen TVs, satellite service in case there is no cable available, full air-conditioning, (and heat when needed), a full bathroom, kitchen with corion countertops, double sink, stove and microwave/convection oven, all leather couches, lazy boy chairs as well as computer, printer/scanner, fully stocked full size french door refrigerator, well stocked wine cupboard, 2 pantries, oodles of storage to name the basics. We do not have a diswasher…aha! so we ARE roughing it….sort of….. 🙂
And tonight, when all the world is asleep, here I sit wide awake and just aching to be back in my RV, listening to the rain dance on the roof. I am sitting by an open window in our Vermont home, smelling the wet leaves and almost daring enough to take a mid night stroll through the puddles. almost but not quite…..
I have been blessed for so many reasons. I shan’t even attempt to name more than a few….some of which are the fact that we have a lovely permanent home in beautiful lush Bermuda where my dear children and grandchildren are eagerly awaiting our return after more than 2 months abroad. I am also blessed to have such a terrific vacation hom in Vermont and our wonderful Bermuda Belle, our home on wheels. Tonight, right now, I am probably most thankful for my husband of more than 40 years. We have travelled the course of our lives together through many trials and tribulations but in it all, we have walked together, hand in hand most of the time and sometimes fist in fist, but we are together and we are immensely blessed.
Thank you Lord, for happy memories of a happy care free youth and for letting us grow old together with you as our center point. Remind us daily of what you have given to us and how you have promised never to forsake us.