tent

Our Camping Adventure-Once Is Good Enough

Tent

 

The wife and I spent some time cruising around the campground looking for the perfect spot to put our tent. We were rounding the corner and right in front of us was a perfect all grass spot. So excited, How could anyone of missed this great spot? I told my wife to walk back to the campground office and tell them we were taking spot 28 in the Gold section. We hadn’t been camping in awhile and certainly setting up this new tent we bought from Wally’s World might be somewhat of a challenge. Neither of the two of us were that mechanically inclined. We pulled out the directions,  first thing you have to do,right?  I was looking at all German section, then Japanese, had to be an English version. Ah!Here it is, located the correct language. We were fan dangling with the the poles and then had the tent upside down but we figured it out and the tent was setup.

The first thing I noticed was the amount of blackflies and mosquito’s. I didn’t notice at first but there was a small stream off to the right of the camping spot. This might be a problem if we get a lot of precipitation. Next thing and don’t forget, beer. This is must have after a long process of setup. Now with the first can down we proceeded to get out some bug spray. Honey! You know where the bug spray is? She didn’t have a clue and neither did I. So back to swatting the critters. I noticed my wife was getting welts all over her body. I never knew this to be a problem with her but on this day she was getting affected in a big way. She was starting to swell like I have never seen before. You might want to go inside the tent for awhile, I  think you are allergic. She proceeded inside and I finished up everything else. I put together a Wally world chair we had bought on the way up. I went to sit down in the new chair and the metal legs folded up , head over tea kettle I went. Glad everyone else camping around us were at the beach.

Things just didn’t seem to get any better as the day progressed. My wife decided to take a nap, or at least that was what I thought. I went inside the tent to wake her up so we can have a little time together, We were camping, right? I shook her, Honey wake up! She didn’t really stir that much and her breathing was somewhat labored. I shook her many times and she just wasn’t waking up. Her lips were swollen and getting blue. It finally clicked in that she was having an anaphylactic reaction to all the bug bites. I remember I had my Epi pen inside the center console of the truck. I pushed the plunger into her thigh. I could tell almost immediately she was improving. She opened her eyes and smiled at me. What’s up? She replied, not knowing what was going on. Oh, Nothing, just waiting for you to get up. I didn’t want to make a big scene so I didn’t tell her, I gave her an injection. I wanted a good retreat for the two of us and spending it at the hospital was not one of them. She got up and we decided to make some dinner.

The cooking was another issue. I forgot to bring the Coleman stove that her mother and father had bought us for Christmas. Honey, no problem I know your a little upset but I will make a campfire. You don’t know how to make a campfire, she replied. I was in the Boy Scouts when I was a kid, I replied. I found some loose paper in my truck, put a few sticks together and lit the fire. Phew, diverted this one when the fire took off. I could hear rumbles of thunder way in the background. I hope it misses us.

We are now sitting in the tent and it is raining cats and dogs. Ruff, Meow! The rating on tent stated it was moisture resistant but not rain proof. The rain was coming down so hard and it was very windy. I started seeing water pooling at the edges of the tent and moving closer to the sleeping bags. We couldn’t stop the rain and we tried everything we knew to try and dam up everything around but the water continued its path eventually soaking everything we owned, including the sleeping bags. The wife and I gave up on the tent and slept the night in the pickup truck. I woke up with a very stiff neck and so did she. It was time to find out how bad the tent handled everything. I unzipped the front and water started pouring out the front door. The sleeping bags were under water. We spent the next day at the dry cleaners getting the bags dried out. The sun had come out this day and we aired everything out. The next night, guess what? Another storm came in. There must of been a reason why no one chose this campsite. After further investigation I noticed the stream had overflowed and we were sitting in the middle of a small pond of water.

This one camping trip ruined us for many years until one day my wife told me about a fully enclosed camper for sale that her friend was selling. It was a no brainer. We were never to go tenting again. I do however know that just because a site looks beautiful at a campground it is not always the best.

D.H.Bilodeau 2016

 

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