I'm glad Dr. H. blogged about all the gory details of our van disaster, so that I don't have to. As I told folks last night, "Don't ask me about the van. We're in denial." So I'll focus instead on the actual camping trip, which was the whole point of the weekend. And I must add that, although our van breaking down in inconvenient and costly, I am amazed at how God provided for us: by the location of our breakdown (right outside the campground entrance), by our amazing friends, and by Randy's summer paycheck coming in just a couple of days. And so, back to denial and to our camping trip:
The spot we like at Smokemont Campground in the Carolina side of the Smokies is right by the river.
But before river play comes camp organization, including putting up the tents. Watching three teenage boys (two of whom are Boy Scouts) putting up a tent resembles an episode of The Three Stooges. They did get their tent up, eventually.
Duncan and Emily can have fun anywhere. Here they are making the best of having to wait for the rest of the tubes to get air.
Now these four are ready to head to the river...
And this is what the youngest 4 campers spent most of the day doing: tubing down a short rapid in the
frigid refreshing mountain river.
Here are Duncan and Emily discussing the fine art of navigating the rapids...
When they weren't swimming, they had card games and board games to play, and Duncan and Emily always invent their own mysterious games.
All that fresh air and cold water wears out both man and beast. And what were the three teenaged boys doing all this time? Mostly they took very long walks, ate Slim Jims and poptarts, and listened to their iPods.
We broke camp Monday at noon and had a little time to kill before heading to the repair shop in Cherokee to check on our van, so we stopped in at the Oconaluftee Visitors' Center a few miles outside the campground.
The kids enjoyed a brief walk around the pioneer homestead exhibit (brief because it was hot and they've been there before).
We were all weary to the bone by this time, and Duncan and Laurel were asleep by the time we got to the car repair shop in Cherokee, just a few minutes later. Since we were only there long enough to hear the words "rebuild the transmission," they kept on sleeping half the way home.
And it is always good to be home. I'm nearly done with the laundry and am restoring some semblance of order to our home. The kids are somewhat recuperating, although Laurel's late swim meet last night (we left the pool at 10:15 p.m.) will probably result in some grumpy children today. That's always the downside of a camping weekend: the load of laundry and the days of recuperating on the other end. Oh yeah, and that van sitting somewhere at the casinos...