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Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013
Camping memories are pricelessPosted Monday, August 16, 2010, at 3:21 PM
The mini cigar smoking little old lady at the junk shop in Cave City, Ky. called "The Olde General Store". (Photo by Nick Schneider)
What is it about people that makes us pack up all of our necessary things we think we need to survive and head to the lesser comforts of the woodlands to spend a couple of days of rest and relaxation?
Half of our time is spent loading and unloading or figuring out where we put something.
The other half is not all that bad.
Why do we think we have to load up a bunch of food, pots, pans and a variety of utensils to cook at a campsite or in a very small cabin that was so tiny that our kitchen table was perched outside on the porch?
Why do we have to leave the relative bug-free confines of our homes and end up smack dab in the middle of a mecca of flies, mosquitos and other flying critters whose only purpose in their lives is to make us miserable or less than happy?
Such was my life the past weekend as my family ventured to Jellystone Campground in Cave City, Ky., on the doorsteps to one of the nation's largest cavern systems and Mammoth Cave National Park.
We were attending a family reunion of my in-laws step-family, so immediately you can guess I knew few people attending this event.
I do know that the step-relatives can cook grilled brats and some really good catfish filets.
There was also plenty of corn hole (am I the only one who gets a nasty thought when somebody says the name of that game?) and miniature golf played along with a bundle of just sitting around and doing nothing.
The cabin we called home for two days was adequate, but small three rooms for six adults and one of the rooms is the bathroom/shower is a definition of tiny.
We ventured to a place that charged us for firewood and ice and all of the other amenities that provided us with so much fun, rest and relaxation.
There were plenty of laughs and a variety of antics that made for an enjoyable time.
I bet one certain member of our camping party will not forget the rather wet wake-up call she received on Saturday morning when she failed to respond quickly to our attempts to humanly and kindly get her out of her top bunk bed.
She had slept through a couple of fire alarms caused by smoke and steam from breakfast preparation and a round or two from a conventional alarm clock. So we were left to the only available choice left to get her moving -- a cup of rather chilly water that had been dipped from one of the coolers.
The words she said can not be repeated.
Also, two other members of our group will probably be laughing and talking about the two memorable nights they spent jockeying for position and simply holding on for dear life to stay atop a blow-up mattress that had been placed on a less-than-large futon to provide them with sleeping comfort.
The vision of my wife's step-sister flying through the air and landing on the floor when her husband hopped off the air mattress at 5 a.m. will linger with me for a while. I can tell you she had a ride that was equal to any that Holiday World could have provided.
And yes, we sort of roughed-it.
But we did have a pretty good wi-fi signal for a while and was able to communicate with the world outside of this camping paradise briefly on Friday and part of the day on Saturday. The rest of the time, the computer sat idle.
But then we probably shouldn't have been relying on being connected anyway.
We did journey off the campgrounds on Saturday and browsed through the neatest antique junk store you can imagine. It was like American Pickers on steroids.
Whatever trash or treasure you can imagine was in this place even a life-sized fiberglass horse with a dog cowboy; onyx and glass rocks, old gas pumps, outdoor advertising signs, slot machines, all kinds of hats, walking sticks, and the list goes on and on.
There was even a World War I vintage airplane crashed into the top of one of the outbuildings and a very cute, little old, very friendly lady with a Kentucky drawl sitting on a wooden bench out front of the place slowly smoking a small cigar.
It was simply classic.
We're back home now with a bag of dirty clothes, but a weekend of memories that are priceless.
Nick is the assistant editor for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached by telephone at 847-4487 or 1-800-947-4487; by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages....
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