The time has come to put my words into action. I bought my tent the other day, and I have all the supplies I need to go camping. Tomorrow will see me venture forth on my first (in a VERY long time) camping trip. In order to prevent myself from being the comical entertainment for an entire campground tomorrow afternoon when I put up my tent, I decided I would practice at home first.

So I brought everything into the family room and pitched the tent in front of the TV. OH. MY. GOODNESS! I am so thankful that I tried it in the privacy of my own home before I did it in public. I can just see the people near me at the campground punching each other and pointing in my direction as I demonstrate my one-person imitation of the three stooges putting up a tent. When the people at the store demonstrated it, it looked so simple. Quick and easy – five minutes and you’re done – absolutely no problem for one person to do. Wrong! Thirty minutes, and the sweat was pouring off me. Forty-five minutes, and I’m seriously considering packing it all up and taking it back to the store. A little over an hour, and the tent is up. . . incorrectly. An hour and a half, and the tent is up correctly. The directions apparently assume that the person reading them has a background understanding of how to pitch a tent. They were wrong. I will take the tent down later tonight and pack it away, and then I will put it up again. The second time HAS to be quicker. And then tomorrow when I put it up for the third time, it should be a piece of cake – hopefully. At least that’s what I’m counting on.

I tried out my nifty little hand-size stove, too. Just screw the little burner into the propane canister (or some kind of canister of gas — I guess it’s propane) – and VOILA! A working stove. Of course after I turned it off, I started to fold it back up and burned my hand. Note to self: Let the stove COOL OFF before putting it away.

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