Zack got it in his head on Monday that he wanted to do something adventurous during Spring Break this week. Susan is still getting used to her brand-new hip and Lauren has a different vacation schedule, so we hadn’t planned to do any adventuring as a family. Sorry, Bud – you’re kind of on your own this time.
Several pretty hefty squalls dumped rain on us at the beginning of the week, a couple of them spiced up with some thunder and lightning. Apparently that kind of weather gets Zack thinking about camping, of all things. Out came the tent, and in between storm cells Lauren and Zack and his pals Hunter and Ben and I quickly set it up on the back deck. The temperature was all of 43 degrees with enough wind that we had to nail down several corners of the tent to keep it from blowing away.
As soon as the tent went up, more rain came down. Spot checks revealed no leaks, so the boys hauled in sleeping bags, Therm-a-rest pads, extra blankets, quilts, and pillows. We ran an extension cord out the bathroom window so they could have enough light to play cards.
In keeping with the camping adventure, we had burgers by candlelight and made s’mores in the woodstove downstairs; didn’t even drip melted marshmallows and chocolate on the carpet. After dinner the boys disappeared into the tent, and we could hear them talking and laughing above the howling wind and sound of rain pounding on the roof.
I didn’t even think of telling good scary stories, although I startled the boys by using my bullhorn to announce ‘lights out’ time. (Zack said at first he thought it might be a tsunami warning coming from the nearby ferry dock.) Other nocturnal sounds included two neighbors who didn’t remember until quite late to roll their garbage and recycling containers down long driveways for early morning pick-up.
One other thing in keeping with the spirit of camping: none of the boys came in the house to use the bathroom during the night. Guess that one’s a no brainer.
The morning air was full of songbirds greeting the new day. Don’t know if it was that concert or the noise of garbage trucks working their way up and back down the street that woke the boys earlier than we expected. They were dressed, pleasant, and conversational when they came into the kitchen. But after devouring a pancake breakfast, they retreated to the basement (not back into the tent) for a short nap.
Aren’t vacations great?