Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Camp Tales - Part One.


What an eventful weekend. I have been to this campground before. It was peaceful, and very beautiful. It was not a weekend.

It was still beautiful, towering Redwood trees and Giant Sequoia are everywhere making it an adventure wonderland for the kids. The air is delicious and the river perfect for swimming in. We were with a large group, spread out over 3 sites. It seemed everyone else had the same idea. The woods were vibrant with excited kids and relaxed adults.

Trying to get 7 kids to bed should have been a challenge, especially when you throw sugary marshmallows into the mix but all the fresh air and running around took it's toll and we got them all down without much resistance.

Pity we couldn't say the same about the adults! There's something about beer and campfire that makes grown ups with kids forget they will be back up again at 6am.
We turned in way too late. The kid free campers in the site next to ours decided this was a good time to start the drunken singing - sigh.

By 3am everything was finally quiet and peaceful. Cue drama.
I had just given the baby her middle of the night bottle (ask me sometime how I keep a bottle warm in a tent for several hours!) when there was a sudden burst of panicked shouting through the forest.
We were not in bear county so I knew it wasn't that. It turns out some poor soul was having a medical emergency. Thankfully we had cell reception (the wonders of modern science) so the fire department and EMT's were quickly on their way. A firetruck with flashing lights is an odd thing in a campground. It is so LOUD and the lights are so bright. Kids started to wake.
The six year old and the baby were still sleeping and I was so grateful. Then the helicopter came.
Turns out the man needed to go to a hospital and ground transport would be too slow.
A helicopter. I think we can now safely assume there is not a kid asleep in any neighboring houses - never mind tents.

By 4.30am all was calm again. The helicopter was safely transporting the man to hospital. The firetruck was gone and almost instantly the forest was quiet again.
Except for the 30 kids who were now wide awake and pretending to be helicopter pilots....

As it turned out the man was fine and actually back at camp in time for breakfast!
We were all very pleased about a happy ending, pleased in a bleary eyed, no sleep, too much beer and dealing with over-tired, cranky kids kind of way.

Did I mention how much I love camping?

71 comments:

  1. I really do want to know how you keep a bottle warm for several hours in a tent...this is information I need desperately! We were also camping this weekend, in Humboldt. Unfortunately for #3 she has to endure cold bottles in the middle of the night!

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  2. Stopping by from SITS...

    At least that gave them a funny story to tell everyone. Camping was NEVER that much fun when I was a kid!

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  3. Megan send me your email address and I'll let you in on my secret.
    Joy-mcg@sbcglobal.net

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  4. I hate to admit that I slept through the worst of it. And I know the bottle warming secret and might be persuaded to part with this information for the proper bribe.

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  5. I just don't know how you do it. Get yourself planted right smack dab in the middle of the action every time. I mean, c'mon, I've been camping regularly my entire life, and I've never, repeat never, been awakened at 3:30am by a helicopter rescue. Drunken singing, yes. A helicopter rescue?? No siree. Some girls have all the fun.

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  6. You do have action packed trips don't you - ha ha ! I can only imagine the noise of a fire truck and helicopter on a campsite in the middle of the night. Funny. I can say that as the man was obviously okay. Although, if that had been me airlifted out and waking everyone with the drama, I don;t think I would have returned to the site the next morning :)

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  7. Good morning!
    Wow ... sounds like a wonderful trip. Glad to hear your camping neighbor was okay. Our last camping trip was near a lake and there was an accident with a not so happy result. With redwoods and sequoia's, sounds like you're somewhere in California :)
    Have a wonderful day ..
    From your SITS-ta ..
    Lani

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  8. wow, you made me laugh out loud. Thanks so much.

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  9. Sounds very restful, LOL!!! Bye the way, Happy SITS day.

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  10. Happy SITS day. :) At least your trips aren't boring. LOL

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  11. That sounds like absolute hell on earth. You poor thing!!!!

    Happy SITS day.

    LBM xxxx

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  12. Oh my! Glad the gentleman was okay but having to deal with 30 children who are tired and cranky - that's not fun.

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  13. Not your usual camping trip I take it. I've never been camping. That had to be scary for that man's family but glad he was able to return so soon and was okay!

    Congrats on your SITS day!

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  14. Wow. That was funny - and thank you, I really needed that. I've been quarantined with my swine flu addled toddler for the last four days, and it's quite possible that without bloggers like you, I might lose my mind, so thank you. I needed that laugh.

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  15. I must admit, I'm really curious about that bottle!

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  16. OMG, that thing about the kids acting like helicopter pilots...too much. I can just see/hear it now! LOL

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  17. There are many reasons I dislike camping - but, until now, helicopters and medical emergencies were not among them. I will now add them to my list of reasons why I don't "do" camping. ;)

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  18. Oh gosh, what an event. We prefer camping in our national parks where they have a 10:00 pm silent time. After that you can talk, but no music, singing, shouting etc.

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  19. More power to you b/c I cannot IMAGINE camping! Although all that fresh air does tempt me.

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  20. haha! this is my camping fear. It sounds so peaceful and nice but knowing my luck it would be this story plus a snow storm or hurricane.

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  21. I have never camped with my kids--but the 4:30 a.m. thing sounds like par for the course.
    Happy SITS day!
    @cheapchichome

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  22. This is my life! Except no medical emergency, just awake kids and an uncomfy sleeping bag...

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  23. The thing about camping for me is that it always SEEMS like it's going to be so much more fun than it actually is. :-) Great story.

    pk @ Room Remix

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  24. That is why I camp at the Hilton! Although the last time I was there, someone pulled a fire alarm at 200 am and the hotel had to be evacuated. :)

    Makes for great stories doesn't it??

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  25. Great story. Glad you can laugh about it now. :-)
    Stopping by from SITS!

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  26. Wow, that was a camping trip you can talk about for years to come! Glad you retained a sense of humor! Happy SITS day!

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  27. Not the way I remember the camping of my childhood. There were definitely NO helicopters!

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  28. My idea of "roughing it" is no mini bar!

    Stopping by from SITS to wish you all the best today.

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  29. Camping is always an adventure!

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  30. First of all, you're right. It's funny how easy it is to forget about that sleeping child that's going to get you up super early....

    Sounds pretty eventful. Not fun. Glad the guy was okay, though.

    Happy SITS day!

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  31. Yes, but what a great family story. It'll get brought up for years to come!

    Happy SITS day!

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  32. we love camping too, but thank goodness, our little guy kinda follows our schedule, he gets tired but holds on for a good long time before finally falling asleep....
    kinda lazy in the morning that one because after he wakes up he likes to lay in bed for about an hour...

    i know, you are having murderous thoughts towards me right now....my next kid will be satan, i'm sure...

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  33. Despite the drama at night, it sounds like a fun family trip! Where were you camping? It looks beautiful! My husband and I took the girls to Kings Canyon last summer and absolutely loved it! There are certain things it seems you can always count on with camping: S'mores and campfires, wonderfully fresh air, and drunken & loud campers at the next site. What is up with this phenomenon? Last time we went camping it was drunk people, loud laughter, and a Ukelele!

    Jenn @ rookno17.blogspot.com

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  34. Sounds like the campground operative word that night was "drama!" Parents sure have a hefty price to pay for giving their kids a fun time...okay, so that's not true all of the time, just right at a time when you'd prefer that it not be true :-)

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  35. That figures! I am just glad it was a big bear coming by for a visit!! ;-)

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  36. I have never yet been camping when disaster hasn't struck. At least...it wasn't a tornado? (yep, had that happen).

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  37. I am SO not taking my kids camping...my husband can.

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  38. Thank-you for the great reminder as to why I do NOT camp! (Glad to hear the man was ok)

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  39. I'm missing out on all this excitement?! The last time me and the hubs went camping we left The Kid which has now become The Kids so I have no kids and camping stories. Poor me right? ;o)

    Happy SITS day!

    My best, Lynn

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  40. While that is my camping nightmare, I will assume it will bring years of laughter about "that" camping trip. With a happy ending, as well.
    Enjoy your SITS day!
    ***Ally

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  41. WOW we had our first family campout this weekend howevee it was not THAT exciting (thankfully)

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  42. It's amazing how we can get by on so little sleep... at least the kids were entertained, right? RIGHT?? :P

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  43. LOL camping memories are the best! bad camping ones even better if you ask me! When there is "that one time when.... (insert something bad or unexpected here)" stories to compare it to- it makes each subsequent trip better. At least no one in your camp got the expensive helicopter ride! Although that would be a great story later too ;)

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  44. what an adventure! i've always wondered what those camping trips are going to be like when we have little ones... i think i can wait another season or two. ;) great post! i love your writing!

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  45. EW, camping was never my thing. I never understood purposely going out the the way to revert back to no technology! Ha ha, no I would love to actually go and have an adventure like that. Glad your sleepless night turned out to be awesome!
    -Robin

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  46. Things like that (and peeing outside) are why I don't go camping. But I love to hear others funny camping stories! Happy SITS day!

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  47. Murphy's Law at work, eh?

    Happy SITS Day!

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  48. That's hilarious! Hopefully you were able to catch up on your sleep at a later time! Ah, the adventures of the outdoors! Enjoy your SITS day.

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  49. That is why the good Lord created hotels! :) I'm just saying...

    Alex
    aka Ma What's For Dinner.

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  50. We camp often and this story is all too familiar! Not the helicopter part, but the too much beer not enough sleep over-marshamallowed kids part. :) Thanks for sharing with us from SITS!

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  51. Oh my goodness - what an adventure - and one I'm sure the kids will remember FOREVER!!

    I gave up camping a few years ago. I kept trying, but each year it was worse and worse. I think I'm allergic to the experience actually because I always seemed to leave feeling sick (and tired)! I need a real bed... and a shower... and a Starbucks! ;)

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  52. I bet the kids were loving being up so late. Kids love the drama!

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  53. I love camping and have so much fun!

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  54. Wow. We've raised our kids on a steady schedule of camping, but I can't say we've ever experienced anything of this magnitude. Great story!

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  55. That's a story to be told again and again over thanksgiving dinner lol.

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  56. We recently went camping with the 2 year old and the 8 year old for the first time...much different to camp as the mom instead of the kid! My 2 year old decided to play hide and seek (minus the seek part) and hid in the tent and we thought we lost her in the forest...we almost had helicopters!

    Holly @ 504

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  57. Sounds like one heck of a camping trip! I'm not a big fan of camping myself, but I'm glad you enjoyed yourself despite everything.

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  58. The joys of camping. We just went Labor Day weekend for the 1st time in a long time. I love the fact that the sun wakes the kids when it rises and there is NO white noise.:) Ahh....camping.

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  59. Well that's certainly a trip to remember. We haven't been camping since the kids were born (the oldest is almost three). I think my husband is scared that he'll never sleep. I'm willing to chance it though. Maybe next summer.

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  60. Wow what a commotion!! There's no way my kids would have slept through all of that!

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  61. Happy SITS day - even if it is almost over.

    I hate camping too, but I think my kids would have slept through the helicopter. They've slept through fire alarms going off (in their rooms) and an earthquake. That doesn't mean I'm going to take them camping and risk the fire trucks & helicopters :)

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  62. lol. how does one play a helicopter pilot? i think i'd like to see a re-enactment. (smile.)

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  63. I am absolutely on a mission to go see the Redwoods, a dream worth looking forward too!

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  64. Sounds like the camp trip from HELL!

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  66. You're a hardcore camper, too. Tents and everything...a genuine trooper!

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