Planning a Camping Trip

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My little kitty, Gigi, on her little perch.  She’s a funny little thing.

My best friend is in the hospital, for the second time this month.  Her heart is not acting right.  I hope to God they can do something to make it work right again.  I met her on the day I got sober.  She 12 stepped me.  It was the one and only twelve step call she ever made.  I am so grateful because I believe she was the one person in the world who could have talked to me that day and gotten me to go to a meeting with her.  The rest is, as they say, history.  We formed a fast friendship and have been friends since.  I have stayed sober, she has not.  She married a Brit and moved to England 20 years ago, after that she started drinking again.  We write each other every day.  I haven’t heard from her today and I am a bit terrified.

Yesterday I bought a tent!  I am camping at Yellowstone National Park in August.  I am so excited about this trip.  I never thought I would go camping by myself, and certainly not at Yellowstone.  I am so afraid of big wild animals.  Bison are BIG and they are everywhere in YNP.  I will have to stop visualizing one stomping over my tent while I sleep.   I will also have to stop thinking about being a snack for a bear.  I will read everything I can get my hands on about being in that park.  I plan on eating at restaurants so I don’t have to worry about cooking and storing food properly.

You may ask, why do this if you are so afraid of animals?  Well, I am doing this so I can see my two older grandchildren who live very near the park.  Hotel rooms in their town are generally over $300 a night, and that just isn’t in my budget anymore. They live with their grandfather, my ex-husband, and (obviously) I am not invited to stay at their house.  My eldest granddaughter now has a drivers’ license, so they have a bit more freedom to visit me.  Camping at the park, including the purchase of a tent and sleeping bag, will cost less than one night at a hotel.

Earlier this year, I realized they are almost grown and I have not been much a part of their lives since my ex took custody.  It is SO hard to get to see them.  I decided that I would go up there and do whatever I can to see them, if only for a meal in a restaurant.  I will do that.  They will know that I did that.  It’s all I can do.

It is so important that I do all that I can do.  One of the best ways I have found to avoid regrets is to do what I can, and when I think I can’t, re-think and find ways to do whatever little I can.

Frank Sinatra may cavalierly sing:  Regrets, I’ve had a few, but then again, too few to mention….  but with the life of an alcoholic, I have a few regrets that are heartbreaking (like not taking proper care of my children when they were little).  So forget about doing it “My Way,” I think I shall try to do it as close to the right way as I possibly can.

By the Grace of God, only by the Grace of God.

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8 Responses to Planning a Camping Trip

  1. How exciting! I just returned from Yellowstone ~ it’s wonderful! I didn’t have the courage to stay in my tent, it was too cold (35-40s) overnight. We stayed in W. Yellowstone @ a no-frills, old school motel for half of what you mentioned. The only animals we saw wandering around in the park were bison and they kept to themselves. You can always buy some bear spray before you go ~ it’s quite expensive inside the park. Have fun!

    • Sandra, happy to hear you enjoyed your visit there. I love Yellowstone. All of the cheaper places in W. Yellowstone are booked for the times I want to go. So, I decided to try to make it an adventure! Thanks for the tip about the bear spray. I will try to get some before I go.

  2. Mary says:

    Love the picture of Gigi. Give you a world of credit for camping … I’ve never had any desire but I can understand your motivation for doing so. You’re making a huge effort and I hope you get to spend some real quality time with them. Stay safe out there !!!

    Mary

  3. mla5073 says:

    I spend time in game reserves, Mary Christine, and keeping safe is mostly common sense and alertness. But the reward is the natural beauty and wildlife — seen from a distance!

    Prayers for family healing too.

    MaryLA

    • Good to hear from you Mary! I fluctuate between terror and extreme excitement! If I spend too much time on the Yellowstone NP website, I get scared. But they need to warn the peeps who think the bears are pets and are just there for their enjoyment and photo ops.

  4. Mary says:

    I think today is 33 years …. Congratulations, Mary!!!!

    Mary

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