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A vacation From my vacation


Vacation. Even the sound of the word invokes excitement in many. Whether it’s travel plans to far off lands, relaxing days spent lounging on a beach or even just an escape from reality without leaving your home, vacation is many different things for everyone but with one common thread – fun.
But, we know this isn’t always the case. We have all heard of those vacations from Hell where things did not go as planned and, while my recent vacation was no where near that, I can’t quite say it was the relaxing experience I had hoped it to be.
My husband and I decided to load up our camper and take the children for a week at Blue Lakes in the Duck Mountain Provincial Park. A beautiful area, there is always lots for the kids to do and plenty of lakes for my husband to fish. My plan... relax in my camp chair with a good book – or three – and let the lazy days of summer pass by.
WRONG. Do you know how much work it is to take a husband and two children camping for a week?
We spent the week prior packing up the boat and all the fishing gear, cleaning the camper and ensuring all the supplies we needed were in there, planning meals and loading the food and, not to be forgotten, all the toys and other sources of entertainment for the children. It seemed to never end.
I won’t even go into what needed to be done here at the office to prepare for this but, suffice to say, by the time this was done, I more than needed that vacation.
When the big day arrived to head out I rushed home from work to quickly hook up and beat the Swan River rush hour traffic up to cottage country. We finally carted off up the mountain in two vehicles with minimal screaming and crying – mostly from the children – to arrive at our destination.
You might think the story ends there but anyone who has ever gone camping knows that arrival is just half the battle – you have to park the trailer, level the trailer, fold out the awning, make the beds, setup the rest of the camp and, of course, gather wood. It’s at that point that you realize it’s now 8 p.m., no one has eaten supper and the only way anyone is getting fed is if you build a fire from all that wood you collected and roast something over – a longer process than one might initially think.
After a night’s rest, which came later than expected as the two-year-old was out of routine without her bed from home and didn’t want to sleep – ever, I had a new outlook the next day. Turns out that cooking, cleaning up after, and all the other things that happen in daily life at home take a lot longer at the lake. And, there are far more dangers for children than in your own home and they need to be monitored a lot closer than at home. So, in the end, I didn’t end up having as much free time as I hoped.
You would think that from my story this is my first time camping, but it’s not. It seems that word vacation clouds your mind and you forget everything that it takes to make a vacation happen because, if I take a moment and reflect back, it really was an enjoyable week and any day I would sacrifice my free time to ensure my loved ones enjoyed theirs.