Sunday, February 25 , 2018, 2:54 am | Fair 48º


She Said, Z Said: Happy Trails to Camping

There's something to be said for the Great Outdoors but She and Z will never be mistaken for Lewis and Clark.

She: Tell me again: Why do I camp?

Z: To remind yourself how great it is to live indoors, even in the shack.

She: I want to get all my whining out of the way first, because there are definitely things I do like about camping.

Z: The dirt?

She: It does make me look like I have a nice tan.

Z: And I know you like the wine.

She: Especially if we would have had enough of it. I will never delegate that responsibility to anyone else again.

Z: I feel ya.

She: Besides camping on a deserted island and, “running out of wine with no store to buy it in,” here’s some more of my whining list: outhouses, sleeping on the ground, swarms of yellow jackets, outhouses, carrying stuff 37 miles to the campground, outhouses, no showers, cooking on vacation, outhouses, oh, and outhouses.

Z: Wouldn’t the list be shorter if you summarized and wrote down, “camping?”

She: But there’s plenty I liked. Santa Cruz Island was beautiful, and the ocean was beautiful, and the island foxes were totally cute.

Z: And we got to see the entire island the six times we had to walk the 57-mile trail to carry our stuff to the campground. Sherpas, my butt.

She: I swear I read on the Web site that they carried your gear to the campground for you. I would have never brought those six extra hardcover books if I thought I had to carry them. I finally see the real use for one of those Kindles — camping trips where you forget to bring the bellmen.

Z: You are hereby cut off from interpreting camper English. The Web site said the boat would bring your gear to the island, not the campground. When you combine boat guys with National Park Service guys, that’s a surefire recipe for do-it-yourself.

She: I tried to bribe them with one of my four bags of Costco chocolate. They thought I was kidding, while I thought I was making a huge The Gift of the Magi sacrifice.

Z: I told you we should have brought more beer and less chocolate.

She: And then there were the gale-force winds I had to fight just to make it to the outhouse in the middle of the night.

Z: Surrender, Dorothy. I keep telling you, it’s OK to pee in the woods.

She: That’s gross. Instead, on our next camping trip I’m going to install a catheter for the week.

Z: You really do hate outhouses.

She: Oh, yeah. But I did love how much fun Koss and the other kids had.

Z: That’s true. Koss kept thanking me for bringing him out to the island and taking him on a kayak.

She: I heard A and J, standing on the front of the boat, say, “This is better than Christmas!”

Z: I liked the complete removal from civilization, too. No TV, Internet, or really even light. The stars were spectacular.

She: They were. Almost as spectacular as the flock of ravens who attacked our tent in the middle of the night.

Z: Huh?

She: It’s déjà vu all over again. When I tried to wake you up scare the birds off you just said “Oh, cool,” and went back to snoring and farting — that’s not too different from being at home.

Z: I wasn’t the only one farting. Koss was in the tent, too.

She: Yeah, but he was in the maid’s quarters. I barely even knew he was there.

Z: We’re probably the only people in the world who own a tent that’s bigger than their house.

She: True, and I know people always say that air mattresses blow, but ours kind of rocked.

Z: No, that actually was a rock. I forgot to check for them when I set up the tent.

She: I’m pretty sure Koss took that rock as a souvenir and put it in my backpack for the 97-mile trek back to the boat. I’m going to put on my comment card that they should build some escalators, at least for the hills.

Z: I thought we were being smart to eat all our food that last night, but then we had to carry ourselves — and our trash — out anyway.

She: Camping does give you a new appreciation for nature. And it makes you realize that cities were built for a reason.

Z: Yes, dear.

Share your camping tips with She and Z at [email protected]

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