Monday, March 17, 2008

Adventures in Camping (a multi-part series)

Part 1 - Forgotten Things

This past weekend, the Goofy Family packed up the Family Roadster and headed south for some camping in the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge. Located in southern Oklahoma, the WMWR is home to Bison, Elk, Longhorn Cattle and (much to Goofy Junior's delight) cute little Prairie Dogs.

Since my camera is currently located in the Family Roadster, which is currently located at Mr. Goofy's work garage, you'll have to wait for photos.

This trip was packed with fun, melodrama (present anytime a 4-year-old is involved) and danger. (insert Mutual of Omaha "Wild Kingdom" theme music here - if anyone remembers it)

We didn't decide to make this trip until the last minute. Actually the wrench-in-the-works was trying to sweet-talk the kennel into making room for our beloved dog, Murphy. It's spring break, you know. Thanks to a last minute cancellation, Murphy got a spot at the kennel (or the "spa" as we like to call it). So we were off...

At this point, I must confess that I am an anal-retentive planner/organizer when it comes to traveling. Whether it's a weekend camping trip or a week-long trip via airplane, I get pretty focused on the packing process.

You see, I have this personality flaw: I HATE taking something on a trip that I DON'T use.

It drives me nuts. This includes, but is not limited to, clothes, food, toiletries, shoes, and books (although I always bring too much reading material....always.).

I'm constantly asking myself "Am I really going to need this?" when I pack. I also usually pack, then just for principle, take 2-3 things out and leave them at home. This usually leads to a lot of washing of undies in hotel sinks. But I digress...

My husband, dear Mr. Goofy, is the complete opposite. He would take the kitchen sink with us if he thought there might be a hookup near the campsite for it. I think it's that whole Boy Scout "Be Prepared" philosophy.

Okay, so now that I've established our respective freakishness when it comes to packing, here's what happened on this trip. Since we did not have a lot of time to plan/pack (about 24 hours total), we ended up bringing the wrong things and leaving some essential things.


I remembered my styling brush, but forgot a hair dryer and even more importantly towels. No towels = no showers for us until we got home! Pee-yew!

We remembered all the makings for S'mores (yum) for our campsite dessert, but forgot to bring jugs of water from home. We ended gagging down well water from the campsite. Even adding powdered Powerade to it didn't mask the metalic taste. Gag.

We remembered Uno cards for campsite entertainment (which we didn't end up doing - too windy), but didn't remember to get much traveling cash. We went through 4 toll stations on the way down (and on the way back too) and the campsite office and the local restaurant only took cash. We were borrowing money from Goofy Junior for the last toll!

We remembered our full-on medical kit (complete with splints, roll of bandages, stethoscope, first aid book, etc.) but forgot to replenish our kit with either alcohol wipes or antibiotic cream. We had to doctor our many scrapes with only water and a Band-aid until we got home. Ow.

But even with the forgotten things, and the extra things, we had a great time. We had so much fun that for the next week, I'll be posting more about our trip. There are so many stories to tell...

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