The Answer Is….

If you guessed rain from my last blog last week, you’d be right. Although, I have to say, it was looking like we outsmarted the weatherman on this, our final camping trip for the season. Part of the reason was that we downsized all the stuff we haul with us to a bare minimum–even taking only the cookware we know we’d need for which meals we’d be eating. Gone was the enormous reflective silver tarp that was near to impossible to work with in favor of two cheaper easy-up canopies which were less cumbersome, lighter to carry, allowed more natural light into the area they were covering and the best feature of all, the underneath of the canopy fabric is a heat reflecting material and they bounced the light back brilliantly from our strings of lights.

We didn’t even attempt to see if the yellow-jackets had vacated the ground nest they’d been hiding out in; chances are they and their distant cousins had all been involuntarily vacated from the storm there the weekend before because no matter where we went, we, along with hundreds of other campers were dodging them. And what a storm it was. We’d seen pictures from friends whose permanent sites had suffered some measure of damage, which had already been repaired or at least in some phase of being corrected and the ground was a carpet of fallen branches everywhere you looked, which is a little unsettling considering the area we choose to call ‘home’ for the weekend.

The sun actually came OUT after we set up and there wasn’t a drop of rain to be found. Saturday became a little more ominous and even I could tell it wasn’t the pounding in my head from the hangover (mixed too much the night before) but thunder off in the distance and the quickest spritz fell from the sky. I’ve sweated more than the rain that fell on Saturday morning. Sunday began a bit cloudy, but cleared up, the Mardi Gras Party went off without a hitch and just as we were finishing up dinner with some friends, the raindrops began and suddenly we were in a deluge and we sat out our final bonfire trying to read Ray Milland and Grace Kelly’s lips in “Dial M For Murder” on the iPod because it’s all we could do over the shattering sound of the rain falling on the tarp over the tent, until we gave up and went to sleep.

As I write, comforted by the fact that we had a perfect 5 for 5 rainy weekend camping season (6 for 6, if you count the one weekend in August we went for the day and spent the night at the hotel) our gear is up and drying out in various places around the house.

I also commented last week on the state of the MDA Telethon and I’m seeing that, even with the shortened run time (6 hours down from the usual 21) and the still uncertain reason for Jerry Lewis’ absence, the show brought in $2.6 million more than last year for a national total of $61.5 million.

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