The Good: I went camping with friends. The weather was absolutely perfect. Sure, we had 9 hours of rain, but Mother Nature conveniently waited until we had set up our tents and readied ourselves for an early bedtime, then turned on the rain throughout the night. No tents leaked, and by morning it was cool and sunny. I camped with good friends, had heartfelt conversations over the campfire, and did an educational tree hike with interested kids and an enthusiastic dog.
The Great: the trailer works. (See the lights in the picture below? Those lights are the result of five PhD physicists and about twenty man-hours of effort.) A year ago, encouraged by my avid trailer-loving father, I convinced two other families that we should buy a trailer together. We could share the use and the cost. I hadn't counted on the fact that the trailer kit would take days to build, the trailer wiring system would fritz many times over, and the licensing would cost more than the trailer. Quite frankly, I'm lucky some of my friends are still speaking to me. (It's all good now, right, E&K?... Right?) After eleven months of frustrating, intermittent effort, we have a working trailer, which hauled a bunch of gear to the site.
And there as much rejoicing.
The Ugly: The ticks were awful. We camp on the east coast of the U.S., so regular tick checks, and removing the occasional bloodsucker, are (unfortunately) par for the course. But I must have wandered into a tick playground, and the number of creatures that had to be removed from me was in the double digits. This is (a) disgusting, (b) worrisome, because a small proportion carry diseases, and (c) a total pain because I appear to be fairly allergic and had to dope myself up on Benadryl all week. While I use bug spray religiously, I'll be adding a second chemical to the mix during the next camping trip. In the meantime, I've been extra appreciative of the relatively bug-free city life this week.