Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Defense Rests, Your Honor

It was Fall break for the Alpine school district, and all week we psyched the girls up for a camping adventure on Friday.

Each night, Lilia reminded us of the countdown: "Three more days to camping...two more days to more day to camping."

The day arrived. We're a touch rusty when it comes to camping, as we haven't been for close to three years. Kulani has been busy due to his employment at a firm we lovingly refer to as "Work'em Night and Day." But now that he's working from home, time is on our side.

We had forgotten how long it takes to get things ready. Around 4 p.m. we set out for Cabella's to get some attachments for our camp heater and a carbon monoxide detector, so we could sleep soundly but not too soundly, RIP.

Then we took our propane tank to get it filled up, as well as secure some firewood. Finally around 6 p.m. we made it back home and started throwing the camping supplies into the BMW (Big Mormon Wagon):

  • Cots, check.
  • Lantern, check.
  • Camp heater, check.
  • Tent....
We found the tent, but upon closer inspection, it appeared that the pole strings had been cut. It was 6:30 p.m. and we were just finding this out now. It gets dark here around 7:30 p.m., and we still needed to travel to our camping destination about a half an hour away.

We were (deep breath, deep breath) mad.

"Girls! Get down here right now!" I shouted. Family meeting was in order.

"Who cut these tent poles?" Kulani asked in a stern voice.

After hemming and hawing, Lilia said she'd cut the tent poles, so she could use them for a magic wand.

Kulani dismissed them to their rooms telling them we wouldn't be camping tonight and to think about that the next time they wanted to ruin our stuff.

The girls went up to their room and cried and cried while Kulani assessed the damage. After some time, Lilia came back downstairs.

Fearing that we didn't hammer our point enough, Kulani said, "Lilia, I don't think you've ever seen me this angry. I am really upset by what you did."

Lilia meakly answered, "Dad, I was five when I did it."

Kulani stopped in his tracks. "That's a good argument. In fact, that's probably a winner."

The prosecution threw out the case, and the scheduled camping trip was back on.

Using some fishing line, he tied the ends of the tent pole elastic and strung the elastic through one pole and connected it to the other. He managed to fix the poles except for one. One pole was missing two sections.

I called Recreation Outlet in American Fork, and it turns out they sell replacement sections for around $10 for four sections. You can also buy the elastic for $.15 a yard. It was now 7:30 p.m. I hurried to the store for the replacement sections and more elastic.

I also made a stop at Macey's for some s'more supplies and batteries for the lantern.

By 9:00 p.m., we had all the poles fixed and the camping supplies loaded.

We crammed into the mini-van and rushed up the canyon to find a spot. Surprisingly, all the spots at Salamander Flats weren't taken, so we cozied up next to some car campers, and set up tent.

By 11 p.m. camp was set up and we were roasting marshmallows by the fire. Even though it was very warm in Cedar Hills, it was cold in the mountains. I was very glad for the camp heater, as we slept very soundly that night.

In the morning we went for a short hike.

It was a memorable adventure. Even though getting ready to go camping is a lot of work, I'm really glad we didn't lose our heads completely over the small hiccup. We all lived to camp another day.

Kulani fixing the tent poles.

Kulani and Lehua snuggling by the campfire.

Lilia and Melissa roasting marshmallows.
Lilia, Lissy, and Lehua enjoying the flames.
Girls reading in bed.
Nohea and Lehua settle down for a brisk night of camping.
Jesse finds a place to lay his tired head.
Up early in the morn' for a hike.

Scenic stop on the hike.

Lehua hitching a ride on dad.


Autumn said...

That is just classic! Nicely done on still making it! :)

Heats said...

I love that! Of course she needs a wand! What kind of parents are you that she doesn't already have a wand and had to "do the best she could" to improvise. Shameful.

VaLene Hulme said...

Oh, that is a good story. I would have thrown in the towel long before. You guys are troopers.