There is a rhythm to camping and it takes working together. There is order in setting up such tiny living. There is thoughtfulness to the storage and packing. When the trailer hits the road, the inside has to be tightly packed in so nothing falls out. Secure. Secure is the word I’m focused on today.
It’s almost unbelievable how much energy we put into the experience. Admittedly, now I get to watch with admiration how it gets accomplished. With Stuart having logged almost a week with Tommy, I can sit back and marvel at how quickly camp gets set up. Although the pictures may make this look effortless, there is a lot of effort exercised to load the boards, bikes and kayaks and get the trailer road ready. This type of travel is not for the faint of heart, I can assure you, especially after the juggling of tether straps and upgrading the trailer hitch and the many laundry loads of sweat-soaked clothes leading up to the big day.
With every cinching of the strap, we make sure everything has a place. We take as much risk of breaking out of the equation. We do this as parents. We try to manage the difference between structure and risk. On the road, it forces us to be planned but also to be flexible. We use clothes sparingly so we don’t run out. We monitor our water levels so our tank doesn’t overflow. We carry a sense of worst case scenario to help us prepare. We bring back ups to our back ups just in case. But you cannot prepare for everything.
Surprises happen. . .like a cracked windshield and a busted bike tire. You can run super fast but sometimes you eat dirt unintentionally. Bandaids and duct tape work wonders but not all things can be bandaged. Stitches don’t come out on their own (thanks GiGi for the advance training). Pets have feelings too. A Montana steak bone acts as comfort food for Cleo until her anxiety meds arrive. . . she didn’t weather the storm in Missouri nearly as well as our trailer did.
We are learning to replace our sense of security with a sense of curiosity. Camping drives us to be mindful and present out here because attention to detail is necessary to be safe and secure on the road. However, not all signs are meant to be followed.
Siri doesn’t always send us on the shortest route when gravel roads are involved. Yet, it is a sense of awe and wonder that encourages us to slow down and drives the curiosity to explore around the bend and find the most spectacular vision.