Since my accident several years back I haven’t been camping but once. However, the memories of those long ago days when I was young and had a decent back and neck often come flooding home whenever I bypass a campground on the pristine shores of Maine’s sea coast. And speaking of flooding, there is that one memory of camping that not only brings a smile to my face but sends me into fits of laughter that is barely controllable. That would be the camping trip we had to a shore side campground in Maine.
It was a bit of a cool day Down East but we were undeterred. Our campsite was simply lovely. Nestled between some tall trees it looked right out over the bay and then to the Atlantic Ocean beyond. Thinking to maximize our views of the water, we pitched our tent within a few feet of the water which was accessible by a downward slope. Just in front of the tent, and half way to the water, was a little fire pit nestled into the side of the hill. Getting busy, Dad lit the fire as Mom and I began preparing the food.
Soon, Dad had a roaring fire and Mom and I had a stack of tin foil wrapped potatoes. In a silly and lazy mood we decided to roll the potatoes into the fire all the way down from the picnic table at the top of the hill. Bump, bump, bump. One at a time the potatoes began their descent down the hill. Some became stuck on a tent stake and had to be fetched while still others made it into the bay below. Although we had to fish several potatoes from the murky bay waters some did find their way into the fire pit only to disappear into the ashes where we had to later dig to find them. All in all supper finally rolled into place and our bellies were satisfyingly full.
A few hours and a few hundred S’mores later we were tucked neatly into our sleeping bags, dreaming of all the fun antics that would present themselves the following day. However, our dreams were soon interrupted by a very wet feeling from head to toe. Not knowing what in blue blazes was going on we lit the flashlights and aimed them around the tent. Everywhere there was water!! “Where could that be coming from?”, my Dad mumbled sleepily as he exited the tent and went head over heals into yet more water. Not knowing what was going on he flashed his light towards the bay. There, in place of the bay was water as far as the eye could see. The tide was coming in and it wasn’t done yet. Around Dad’s ankles the water was getting ever higher and higher. Grabbing Mom and I out of the tent we all gathered up our belongings and then dragged the tent up to where the picnic table set nice and dry. There we set, on dry land just above the water line, dripping wet and miserably cold until morning brought us the opportunity to check out and find a nice dry hotel room far from the bay.
To all of you I wish the same happy camping memories that Doc has, minus the water and rolling potatoes of course!!