Visions of Sores, Part 1

As thoughts of summer vacation enter the minds of some, one writer shares a nightmare of a vacation tale about s’mores, a camper and a lot of rain.

January is the month we usually begin planning our summer vacation. What a lovely time we had last year on our camping trip. My brother graciously offered us his pop-up tent camper. He lives 250 miles in the opposite direction of our destination. We spent a weekend before our vacation traveling to get it and bringing it home to pack up. The next week we packed enough for the entire neighborhood into a 7-by-10-foot space. There was a place for everything, and everything was in its place. Once it passed our inspection we were ready to travel to the beautiful bluegrass hills of Kentucky. While my husband drove I closed my eyes and dreamed of relaxing around the campfire eating s’mores.

The scenery was beautiful. We set up the camper and were ready to let the fun begin. I opened the cabinet door to begin making dinner only to find that the five-gallon water jug had leaked. It washed over paper towels and drowned boxes of cereal, spaghetti and crackers. Wet charcoal does not make for good grilling. We dined on apples and Cheetos.

The campground had a beautiful pool with a diving board. The radio announced that the weather for the day would be rain. The kids suited up anyway and dove in the pool. Just so the meteorologist could collect his pay, it rained. And rained. And rained. The canvas camper began to sink with the weight of the water pelting down on it. The rain seeped through cracks to shower our pillows and bedding. It was cold and damp. I burrowed my head in my soggy pillow and cried myself to sleep. Visions of s’mores danced in my head.

A slight clearing in the morning gave way to new hope. We waded our way through the small stream that had formed right outside the camper door. The kids thought it would be fun to jump and splash in it. Our son, in his zeal for fun, twisted his ankle and was near lame for the rest of the day. Our daughter, not to be outdone by her brother, ripped open her finger, which required me to become her full-time nurse for the day. Her finger bled a red river through the 4-H sketch project she was working on. Nice touch.

Not having had much sleep, I fell into one of the poles on the dining fly causing it, as well as me, to collapse. After mending it we were anxious to sit by the fire and relax.

I sunk into a cozy chair and fell straight through it, hitting the ground pretty hard. Sore yet determined, we set out to make a fire. The wood was too wet from the storm. We just sat around the fire ring watching the slowly falling raindrops develop into another storm. As I lay my head on my soggy pillow I prayed, as I am sure Noah did, that this would pass soon.