This past weekend was our annual Mother’s Day friend camping trip. We go camping with this group of people at least a couple of times per year, and usually one of those times is Mother’s Day weekend. Except for last year, what with the premature birth.
This was my first experience taking two kids camping, and we got off to a rough start. We were the first ones to arrive in the camp ground and it was pouring rain. Rowan had a poopsplosion and Lorelei was melting down because I forgot to pack the lunchables and she was starving.
Once the rain was more of a steady shower I opened the back hatch to dig through the cooler for something for Lorelei to eat. As I was standing in the rain with my head buried in the cooler the ranger drove by. Then she backed her truck up to me. I thought she was going to offer help to this overwhelmed mother trying to deal with two kids and a dog by herself in the rain on Mother’s Day weekend.
“I couldn’t help but notice the twelve pack of Yeungling in the back of your car.”
The hell you couldn’t help it. Just keep driving.
“Alcohol is not allowed in state parks. Technically it is a misdemeanor. But I will just confiscate it.”
I’m standing in the rain with two screaming children and you’re going to take my alcohol?!
“Since you’ve got your kids here I won’t make you stand and dump them all. I will just take them.”
The beer or the kids?
“I’ll just write this up and you can sign it. Let the rest of your group know to leave the alcohol at home.”
I am almost 35 years old and she is taking my cheap beer away from me. I’m glad she didn’t see the good beer in the cooler. Or the one I am currently drinking.
I was a little worried about the rest of the weekend, since it wasn’t exactly going well up until that point. But eventually the sun came out, friends arrived, and we carried on. And we made lots of jokes about misdemeanors and taking my beer. When I related the story as friends started arriving, the seven year old son of one of my friends said, “but the good beer is in the cooler right?” He knows what’s up.
Sunday the guys made us breakfast for Mother’s Day — it involved a lot of bacon. Then I asked for one of my favorite Mother’s Day presents to date — for Zach to take both kids home and leave me in the woods. Everything was packed up in the cars and the rest of our group departed. I stayed in my hammock for the next hour, listening to the wind and quiet and the sound of my thoughts. Did you know that there are sounds out there other than the constant chatter of a six year old?
We’re back to reality, now with extra luggage. The camping gear (two freaking car loads!) is strewn all around the house. The laundry is overflowing. The fridge has a science experiment or two going on. And we’re scrounging to find dinner and lunches for the week. But hey, at least we have fond memories.