Road Crew

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Rain dance

There are two things I take for granted living in the teardrop.  First, I spend a lot of time outside. The kitchen is open and the table remains made up as a bed so that most eating and writing is done outdoors. The few times I had bad weather, I simply make a quick cup of ramen and huddle inside with chocolate until it passed.  While I have been fairly content with this arrangement, it occurred to me that this might not be normal or interesting or satisfying to others.  Some might argue that ramen and chocolate are not actually a well-rounded meal.  These people have clearly never gone to college.  Second, I have a lot of rules I live by.  The pleasure of living alone for 16 years is that I get to make all the rules.  The problem with a guest is that suddenly I am expected to provide logic behind the rules.  I consider this grossly unfair.  Because I said so, seems so clear.
These are also some of the reasons I have been reluctant to have people join my trip.  My mother has been angling for an invite for months.  I wasn’t sure how well having a guest would go given her first comment when she saw the camper was a distraught, “Well, I guess you aren’t planning on having any guests!”  Admittedly the camper was not bought with group camping in mind and frankly, it just isn’t designed for it.  First, you have to be willing to spoon and second, you might find yourself peeing six inches from your partner.  This can be stressing on the best of relationships and since I really like my mom, I have been hesitant to invite her to join.
So it fell to Pete to be the first guest.  After a long stretch solo, I was honestly looking forward to some company but it confirmed that while the teardrop is well appointed for one traveler, it gets cozy with two.  After a week in the Olympic Peninsula I can officially say, it is definitely not designed for two people camping in a rain forest.  I am pretty sure a warning about this should be printed in the teardrop brochure.  I imagine it would read something like, Warning: bringing your friend’s wet, soggy mess into your small confined space will make a bear den sound like a five star hotel.  Proceed with extreme caution.
It would of course happen that the moment I picked Pete up from the ferry, it started to rain.  An hour and a half later it was still raining as we sat in the car and stared at the teardrop wondering, what now?  It seemed like a long way to the camper and then once in the camper, what exactly would we do with our damp selves since there is really only room for one to stand at a time? At least in the car, we each had a place to sit down.  We contemplated dinner. There was going to be no place dry to make or eat dinner.  How do you tell a guest that you prefer that they sit on the floor because it makes crumbs easier to sweep up rather than the bed which requires quarters for laundry.  This was complicated by the fact that I have had very good weather on this trip, which should be a good thing but it also meant that I had never bothered to get a raincoat. Living in Arizona, I have somehow lost the ability to even imagine it being cold or rainy longer than 15 minutes. 
            After a couple of damp dinners, I finally broke down and had a rain jacket delivered to the campground.  Later we huddled inside attempting to stay warm.  It was quickly decided that the next teardrop upgrade includes beer and wine bottle holders on the inside so that it can at least be a quality drunken huddle in the rain.  Then we could differentiate the days by the drink: the pinot day or that great chardonnay day.  That said, we didn’t let the rain slow us down.  We ran in the rain.  We cooked in the rain.  We made smors in the rain.  We sat in a hot springs in the rain.  We watched wildlife in the rain. The day I dropped Pete at the airport, it was clear blue sky.  Hasn’t rained since.  Anyone need a small rain jacket?
 I took a ferry!


I sat in a hot spring

The benefits of having someone along that can make fire!

I climbed a tree
An interloper

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