We recently went on a camping trip, yes, TENT camping!! If you have been following us for a while you know we have a 36′ foot 5th wheel travel trailer, so why would we go tent camping? Because we wanted to go somewhere remote, somewhere we hadn’t been before, somewhere we could see the night sky with no lights to interfere.
We had three days and nights of hiking, reading, watching wildlife, eating (why does food taste better when you’re camping??) and just staring into the horizon and the night sky, it was glorious! A couple of days like that gets you right back to baseline, remembering what’s important and feeling renewed, revitalized and refreshed.
Who does this anymore? We use to camp all the time when we where kids. We lived in Northern California and would go to Lassen National Park. My brother was two years older than me but before he became a teenager (and wouldn’t have anything to do with me!) we use to build rafts to float on the lake, play in the forest and imagine we were cowboys, and my Dad would take us both fishing in the creeks and rivers. That is where I learned to love the mountains and fishing is still one of my favorite things to do!
I understand all the basic hurdles because I have it relatively easy. My kids are grown. I set my own schedule. Although I’m plenty busy, I don’t answer to a boss, and there’s no one I have to request vacation time from. So, in that respect, I have it easy. It should be a simple thing to arrange a basic camping trip with friends and family but with everyone’s schedules to consider, it’s not really.
And then there’s the remaining hurdle: the sense of resistance many of us feel for no good reason at all. Beating inertia is tough, even if it’s to do something you really love doing and know to be excellent for your mental and physical health.
I’m not sure where your particular resistance is coming from but we have to defeat it! It’s estimated that 50% of the working population leaves vacation days untaken every year, WHAT????? Since most folks only get 2-3 weeks a year that’s crazy!
My husband worked in cable TV for 20 years. One day he came to work and found his “big boss” in his office giving him a “thank you and see you later letter” with a six months severance package. Do you think they cared if he decided to work instead of taking his vacation time? He gave twenty years of his life to that company, not taking his deserved vacation time would have been a sad story.
This battle—the battle to reclaim the family camping trip—has huge implications. Our children are forgetting how to be creative without a “device” in their hands. What would happen if they spent four days with NO Wi-Fi...they would begin to connect with their family, their feelings and their surroundings. You can’t replicate that. It’ll never happen. So hold onto it. Get together with your people and go do meaningful activities. Camp. Cook. Picnic. Play. Gather the families, the friends, the neighbors. Do it in your backyard if you have to, just DO IT!
Summer is almost here, school is almost out, it’s time to go CAMPING!
What are your favorite memories of getting out in nature? I would love to hear from you……….