So...We Went Camping...
Imagine Scarlett O'Hara delivering her famous, "As God as my witness" line, but substitute "camping" for "hungry" and you'll know exactly how I felt at the end of this fiasco called Let's Go Camping with Toddlers. Our beachside camping trip at Glen Ellis campground in Glen, NH was full of some misadventures (forgotten pieces of the grill, the car battery dying at the campsite, a bear showing up twice, rain 2 of 3 nights, and a 350-yard walk to the nearest bathroom, which with no car meant no shower unless you were willing to get rained on on your way back...next time, umbrella). But it was also full of some good moments - perfect weather, temperature-wise (warm enough to swim, but cool enough at night that bugs didn't bother us - no mosquito bites), ice cream (by the pool and at the arcade), a family bike ride (short though it was with Geoff's tire coming off), beautiful evening back lighting (and my realization I'm getting bored with that style of photo and permission to myself to branch out more), a glorious 3-minute ride on a tube down the river (before I realized there was no easy way to stop, panicked, and jumped out early and nearly broke my leg--I'm OK), a dip back into nature & night photography (how I started out), Geoff's gourmet outdoor cooking (I'm not kidding...he made steak one night, fajitas another...plus amazing pancakes with sausage and French toast with bacon...all on one burner because I forgot the grill parts), C drawing an entire sidewalk chalk city on the big rocks at our little beach, and some super-adorable moments. One of my favorites was when G couldn't find her shoes, so she said, "That's OK, I'll just wear my feetsies." Or when she fell out of her baby float, sank deep in the pool, then swam to the top all on her own and popped up to say, "I went for a swim in the sea! He he!"
And oh, did I forget to mention? A BEAR CAME TO OUR CAMPSITE! TWICE! It was our first night there, and by the time we drove the 3 hours to get there, set up camp with a 2-year-old running around an unfamiliar outdoor location, made dinner (CAN I HELP DADDY?...), and made all the beds and port-a-crib, you can imagine how late it was by the time dessert was over. (Dessert, by the way, was dough boys, which were a first for me, but oh, my, gosh. They were good. Biscuit dough baked over the campfire then stuffed with Hershey's bar bits and topped with butter and cinnamon? Yeah. Sounded good to the bear, too.) It must've been after 9 when the kids were suddenly walking around like tiny zombies saying, "I'm tired!" and "I'm sticky!" And it had just reached That Point where you Had to put them to bed, you know what I'm saying?
So we carried them (or did we bike?) all the way to the bathroom (did I mention it was 400 yards away, and it started to rain while we were in there)? I battled a chorus of 9-year-old girls to brush G's teeth and wipe her up, and when we came back, we discovered the bear. He had eaten the rest of the dough, and all the rest of the chocolate bars (4 or 5).
The bear scampered up a tree overhanging our picnic table, where he stayed while we washed dishes (he was just a little cub, maybe a year or two old, poor baby). Then he had a massive diarrhea explosion all over our campsite - my shoes, our tent, G's cloth diaper and dress that were on the tree-- just everywhere. Dark green bear poo.
So I can tell you definitiely that yes, a bear does **** in the woods!