With Jamel and Bria and their acres of ‘we need this stuff’ tucked all-over-the-damn-place in the back of our kinda vintage, but well preserved, Oldsmobile van, a-campin’ we did go…
If you’re willing to accept an air-conditioned cabin with full bath, fridge, microwave, spacious front porch, cable TV, and wi-fi, camping, then, by golly, we went camping!
The campground was about three miles northeast of the real pretty little town of Holly, Mi.
And, it was set up as a ‘kid self entertainment’ model so we adults could sit around boozing, smoking cigars and swapping tallish tales of past victories and woeful ‘what-else-could-I’da-done’ bad luck stories.
It don’t work that’a way in real time…
In real time, you gotta personally walk them to the different playground areas. Then you gotta watch their every move. And you have’ta ooh! and aah! each of their daring exploits on the same playground equipment they’ve been playing on their entire lives…
Which is exactly what I’d driven 1,550 miles to do… So bring it on, you beautiful Grandkids, I’ve got you covered!
Naturally, being kids and all, they got bored after awhile. Took them 7 and a half minutes, and it’s “let’s do something F-U-Ner”.
Swimming, it’s decided, would top the list of ‘funner’.
Back to the cabin to get into swimwear. There, it’s decided Granny would go with them and Pa would take Ginger for a walk. Worked for me, as I needed a bathroom break anyway.
I’d finished nature’s call and was on the front porch putting Ginger’s leash on, when I hear a buncha babbling barnyard fowl a’squacking and a’sqawking, coming my way.
Yup, it’s my barnyard brood hopping and bopping back from the pool…’Already’? It’s 84 degrees in the shade, but the pool’s too cold. And, we’ll hungry anyways.
I think we’d been ‘camping’ maybe 45 minutes. Hadn’t unpacked and sure as China’s poisoning the planet, weren’t prepared to cookout, as of then.
And so the first day went.
Which is pretty normal for kids being in a new place with so many entertainment options to choose from.
Besides the free stuff, there were amusement park type activities. Outside bowling, small zip line, basketball, putt-putt, etc.
At dusk, they offered free farm tractor wagon rides around the park and out into the boonies. Turned out a favorite for Jamel and Bria, and helped us get them to bed at a reasonable time… Tired but happy.
Day 2 was going much like day 1 until Treasa’s brother Lee showed up with his daughter Leah, and her two boys, aged 9 and 7.
Well now, someone for Jamel to make the rounds with and impress.
Lee had rented a cabin across the lane and kitty-cornered from us. It was bigger than ours, but no bathroom.
His lot quickly became party central for the whole family.
None of us drank, or anything. But cooking out and roasting marshmallows around a big wood fire in the dark of night, was about as much fun as I could tolerate.
By the time Lee got settled in, our son Beau with his other two kids, Beau Jr. and Celia rolled in.
And, the kid energy level kicked into high gear.
Beau had tried to rent a cabin, but they were booked solid until Sunday night. And, he did end up renting a cabin one door fron from us, for a couple nights.
The weather was cooperating and we had almost as many adults as kids. Turned into a relaxing time. Big fires at night. Spectacular starry skies. And, wall-to-wall with friendly campers having a good time without acting up. It was fun.
Then 4 days in it rained. And, turned colder than Winnipeg in May.
Wull, hullo…I’m off to Walmart, 35 minutes away, to get some big-boy-britches. (I’d only packed shorts which is my usual Florida attire)
From there on it was cold in Holly, MI. One night all the way down to 53 degrees. Not my idea of ideal camping weather, heated cabin or not!
But we’d paid for 5 nights.
By then, Lee was gone and we starting burning a bonfire during the day and into the night. We cooked out and the kids actually enjoyed themselves! Good Grandkids, those.
But let me tell you, no grumbling when we packed up!
Ideas for me, your aging related story, or comments are very damn welcome.