March 12, 2015

the weekend in the woods...

A little bit of bittersweet swirled down the drain with the last of the campfire scent.
I was, at last, clean...but I loved our weekend in the woods.
: :
We arrived while the sun was still shining... and the oak draped with Spanish moss and air plants welcomed us, along with a little patch of golden light. The camp site was beautiful. The perfect place to spend a weekend with friends, just enjoying life.

Once we set up our new tent, we realized it seemed smaller in the great outdoors than when Eric popped it up in our living room. It isn't small at all, but Camden decided he would go ahead and set up his own tent alongside ours. I had never seen it assembled... and I loved watching him snap all the pieces together, knowing just what the next step would be. Before he adjusted the fly, he slid two strands of camping lights from his backpack and wound them around the tent poles.  I made him sit inside and wave to me when he was finished. I was amazed by him and a little sad that I hadn't seen it until now...

Our friends arrived after dark and we quickly helped get them moved in. Eric cooked dinner while John started the fire, and before long we were settled in to simply relax.

The laughter around the fire comes in all shapes and sizes. Nervous laughter when you hear an approaching raccoon, or the great guffaw as he races off with a whole sleeve of plastic cups. There is the out-and-out funny, the laugh-til-you-cry, and the kind that bubbles from inside out, with jokes years in the making. And always that why-does-the-smoke-keep-following-me-no-matter-where-I-sit laughter!

Saturday we set out to explore... we kayaked the river, we hiked the trails. We love visiting somewhere new because there is a fresh adventure around every turn.

My favorite part was the trees. The branches reached out and up and around the bend. Limbs were covered with Resurrection fern, brown and craggy. I wished it was green and lush, but was thankful to imagine the beauty in my mind and know that when the rains come it will be again.

We gathered again by the fire... feet up, eyes sliding closed until the laughter comes around again. As night comes, the kids huddle around the lantern and play a few games of Clue, and Eric starts the coals that will cook our dinner in deep cast iron pots. The guys walk down the path to chat with the Boy Scouts camping nearby just before dinner... and after, we play a few hands of Rummy. After round two of the campfire, we straggle into tents, tired from the good, good day.  

It is never easy to leave this place where the breathing, and the living, is easy. 



Southern Gal said...

It sounds amazing. You know smoke follows beauty, right?

Busy Bee Suz said...

How fun!!! Oh, how I miss camping....but I'll never miss SMELLING of camp smoke. :) I'm so glad all of you had a nice weekend making more fun memories.

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