An Old Dog Learns New Tricks

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In my feeble attempt to setup the tent, it was obvious that I was totally lost. No more tent poles, it’s all flexible fiberglass rods now. Ah, but a damsel came to rescue me from MY distress. My darling granddaughter asked me if I needed help.

“What? OK, kiddo, show me your stuff.” It was almost like, “Grandpa get out of the way.” She barked orders at me like a drill sergeant.

“Here, put these together. Slip them through these slots, hook up the bottoms here, bend the poles there, and hook up the other part here. Where’s the rain-fly? Put it over here; hook up the four corners here, like this. Put the entryway awning up like this. Get some rocks inside to hold the tent down (that’s where my grandson came in handy – the rock collector par excellence.)” Then badda-bing – it was all done. I sure learned a LOT from the grandkids. What great fun!

The first night of sleeping in my mini-tent on the air mattress was absolutely great, but I did learn that the best way to keep warm with a sleeping bag is to wear a hoody sweatshirt – too much heat radiates from your cranium, especially if you are devoid of natural protection and insulation (i.e. hair).

The next day was all about exploring; however, we decided not to go back up the hill due to concerns about fuel consumption. So we all walked to the beach, about 1000 yards away by this gorgeous inlet and sandy spit. Ah, hours of entertainment watching how the boating crowd does their thing! From pontoon boats to cigarette speed boats, we saw them all.

Later in the day, it became very, very hot so the group decided to split into two completely different sections. The “adventurers” packed up their day-trip stuff and headed out to explore the incredibly interesting basalt rock formations in the area, and the other group (mine), the “planners”, took their lawn chairs down to the tree-shaded creek bed and resorted to some reading and high-level cogitation. That was until the whole pack of us fell asleep and enjoyed the peace and quiet and life in general. Later on, the “adventurers” came back to the camp, and the “planners” awoke refreshed. The prep for the big potluck dinner was ready to commence. The cooks whipped up their favorite dishes after the gatherers had to go quite a way to find some decent firewood to cook on. An evening of fun, conversation, food and drink began, and it quietly ended at about midnight.

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