We left at 7am on Friday.
2 cars packed with people I love
and camping gear
and a book I never cracked.
Off to Sequoia where I had never been,
where my cell phone was worthless,
and died an hour in so I don't have pictures.
Where you have to put all of your food and smell good stuff
in a metal locker.
Because there are bears.
I drove up and Paul only reprimanded me once for my revving.
We made it in 5 and half hours and it was beautiful
and we set up camp
and stopped by a lodge to call the other car
and pick up some wood.
"Have you seen any bears lately?"
I asked this partially expecting the kid behind the counter
to say no.
"Nope, not here. *pause* But they've been around Stony Creek."
(aka our campsite)
"What'd they do?"
As I nervously smiled and glanced over at Paul
who thought this was hilarious.
"Oh rip up a tent and mess with someone's trailer."
The kid was being very nonchalant.
"Yeah *nervous laugh...sigh...nervous laugh* but no one was in it right?"
"Oh no...the guy was in it. Turned out he'd been BBQing all night
and went to bed in his clothes."
Needless to say
I OCD'd all weekend about food smells
and food out
and scrubbing Lucas down
with unscented baby wipes.
I may or may not have choked
on my beating heart Friday night
waking Paul in tears
because I was convinced
every pine needle falling from every tree
and every twig snapping
was a black bear coming to eat us.
Saturday the two of us woke before dawn
and headed for a spot called "Lost Grove".
We moved Lucas to Paul's mom's tent
and took his uncle along with us.
We drove in the dark to an unmarked spot,
walked down a dark, sparse trail
to quiet peace of heaven amongst the
trees and moss and woodpeckers.
I went for a walk and Paul took pictures.
We came back and made bacon and pancakes
and my coffee had grounds in it but I didn't care.
We spent the day,
7 of us in one car,
walking and climbing
loving the weather
which was a stifling 73 degrees.
Apparently Los Angeles nearly died in the sweltering heat while we were gone.
We came home and made bacon wrapped hot dogs
and I secretly wondered if the bacon smell would attract the bears
and then we had s'mores and I drank hot tea
and for the second night in a row
Paul read Sherlock Holmes to Lucas and I
until we fell asleep.
On the last day we made breakfast and broke camp
and the other car left for home
and Paul and I drove for 7 hours through Kings Canyon.
It was beautiful and peaceful
and I don't know how and when we got so good together
we are so good together.
We made it home Sunday night and unpacked
and washed dishes
and made a replacement list for the supplies.
We took hot showers
and my hair still kind of smelled like smoke
and we went to bed
and I didn't have to be afraid of bears.
We retire the camping gear until spring.
Sad face times infinity.