October 12, 2009

The Never Ending Day

While my faithful readers were getting organized, I was on vacation. Sorry if I misled you to think that I was actually getting organized along with you. Oh the beauty of pre-posting ... so that some evil lurker won't come live in our house while we were gone.

So let's backtrack a week ago, say, to Friday night...
Hubby and I had the car completely packed by 8pm, ready to pull out of the driveway by 6:30am the next morning. We live in a very quiet, almost rural neighborhood. I always park my car in the garage, but we couldn't because of the cargo box that was on top, ready for the trip. As I drifted off to sleep around midnight, I thought to myself, I think I left my purse in the front seat. I should probably go move it... nah, we've never had any trouble in the neighborhood in 8 years. At 4:30 am our doorbell rang. Of course our watchdog went nuts over the doorbell. My fearless hubby went downstairs to answer it, only to find no one there.
SERIOUSLY?! Who does a ring-n-run at 4:30?! I could understand 12-2 am, but 4:30 am???? Didn't that little hellion know that we were leaving to drive 17 hours??
I noticed all the other neighbor's lights were on, so I decided we weren't the only victims. After a call to the sheriff, I knew there would be no going back to sleep.

While it was disconcerting, it turned out to be a blessing. The sheriff came by and volunteered to do a patrol the whole week we would be gone. Oh, and my purse was still there. Thank you, Lord, for your protection!

Our week of vacation started a little earlier than we planned, but that's okay because we packed more into 7 days than I ever thought possible.

After driving for about 8 hours, we realized that we would be arriving at our reservation a couple of hours early.

Miracle of miracles, this happened to only be 7 miles out of the way:

How's that for starting off our vacation right?!
I discovered a new favorite: Hershey's Dark Chocolate with almonds. Divine.
We decided to stock up for the day week.

I mentioned reservations. Oh, did you think hotel? Nope. Camping reservations. Locust Lake Pennsylvania State Park.
Lesson #1: online reservations are not always a good idea. We should have guessed by the toothless park ranger who greeted us that the night would be unforgettable.

{That is not the ranger, it is my adorable hubby doing his favorite thing: cooking outside}

The lake itself was beautiful. We were expecting a view of this:
Instead, we got a wooded, gravel covered site.
Without running water.
And a toilet at least 3 blocks away.
Surrounded by 428 other campers.
Fortunately, my hubby had purchased a portable toilet for the trip. Oh how I love that man! I never thought I would see a toilet seat screwed to the top of a giant paint bucket as a beautiful thing. It was beautiful. Priorities change in desperate times.

So we pitched our tent and made the most of it. The kids enjoyed the campfire while hubby and I cooked dinner.
Lesson #2: Biscuits on a stick don't work, even if the website says they do. But bacon and eggs on the camp stove are perfect!

Since our day had begun before the crack of dawn, we were ready to hit the sack at 8:15.

8:30 a van full of teenage boys rolls into the adjacent campsite
9:00 hubby and kids fall asleep
9:30 son tells me he is sleeping on a rock
9:35 hubby, son and I squeeze onto a queen size air mattress
9:45 I roll off the air mattress onto said rock
10:00 party next door gets started
11:15 I consider politely asking them to tone it down, but weigh it against waking my family
11:30 annoying laughter follows multiple crude jokes from next door
12:00 John Denver (from next door) decides to serenade the entire campground
12:30 party decides to go on a hike really? do you ring-n-run too?
1:00 I drift off to sleep
1:15 party returns from hike
1:30 we've gone from crude jokes to smashing cans on the forehead no, please, allow me
1:45 swear words that I didn't even know try to pass my lips
2:00 headline: "sleep deprived mother of 3 goes on campground rampage" skips through my head
2:20 another [obviously] annoyed camper yells people are try-ing to sleep!!! I want to give a little whoot-whoot, but decide not to wake my little campers
2:30 party comes to an end and teenage boys go to sleep
2:31 caffeine from the 3lbs of chocolate that I consumed decides to kick in

We were up with the sun the next morning and I may or may not have been a little loud and chipper as I announced to the boys next door to my family that it was time to rise and SHINE!!!

After a day like that, I knew that our vacation could only get better ... and it did.
But that's for another day ;)


Anonymous said...

That just cracked me up, and you had even already told me about it! You are a gifted writer, my friend!
:) Erin

Joy for the Seasons said...

Oh my word. What an eventful 24 or so hours! You have just strengthened my conviction to never ever ever go camping. :)

Tracey said...

I didn't know Erin's real name was Anonymous!

Audible groans as I read about your first night of camping...whenever we go camping, I NEVER sleep the first night..and it's miserable.

Can't wait to read about the rest of your adventure!

Anonymous said...

I have been waiting a week to get this report and though I knew about the ring and run, did not know the rest of the day. Amazing that your children slept through it--next time take benadryl. Cannot wait for day 2! What a precious memory you all have made. Miss Dixie

The Lord Family said...

Oh that is too funny! But that is so weird about the ring-n-run at 4:30...

Can't wait for the next installment!

Mom said...

Ring-n-run gave all of us an early start on the day! I agree with Erin, that though I had heard this story, your writing ability adds a new dimension to it. Can't wait to see you tomorrow!

Sherri said...

Precisely why I now only do hotel camping and our kids camp out out in our 3rd floor rec room. Your post gave me horrid flashbacks from my girl-scouting days. I'm so sorry - can't wait to read about day 2.

And I need to share some of my prize dark chocolate with hazelnuts with you...you'll never settle for Hershey's special dark with almonds after you taste it.

Penelope said...

Great story as told by timeline!

Kellie said...

LOL!!! I can only imagine the moments you had. This made me laugh!! Can't wait to hear about more of your adventures!

Suz said...

I so much loved your time line of events. Too funny!
Isn't it amazing how a portable potty can look so beautiful? I just want to know.....did you hang the TP from a tree branch? I have done that back in my camping years. Unfortunately, we did not have a portable potty.

Anonymous said...

We've been to Locust Lake - only 4 hours away from us. Love the path around the lake! And hiking through the woods. I think we slept on the same rock, and those fine young campers who partied next to you must come every year...or send their relatives. Why are some people so oblivious to others. Oh yeah, it's that sin nature kicking in full steam... And when I count my blessing, I include portable potties...

Carpool Queen said...

Oh, this is a going to be a good week around the New Every AM blog. Can't wait to hear more....

And biscuit on a stick SOUNDS like it would work....

Brenda said...

Oh my, what a rough start. Glad things got better for ya!

Samantha said...

Hahaha I love it! I sooooo would have done the same thing along with banging some of those pans together.

Laura said...

OK. So I am a little behind in my blog reading... Therefor, I am reading these in the wrong order -most recent post to older.
After this one (my third read of the night), I am cracking up! This is hysterical to read of your fun?? adventures! :)

Robin aka Chosen said...

You are SO funny. My man and I just sat here reading and laughing (this is what you do when you don't have tv).