Monday, July 24, 2006

My Crappy Camping Adventure


So my camping trip this weekend was pretty much a complete failure. Sometimes things just don't work out the way you'd like I guess. Firstly it was probably the hottest weekend of the year. I'd guesstimate around 110 degrees. Erica and I went with my parents which should've been fun. I mean I don't get too much time to do things like go camping with them, so this was going to be one of maybe only 2 trips this summer. We decided to ride up in their car, actually it's a pickup, one of those nice new big ones. And although the pickup bed is quite large we started out the trip by being squished into a cramped back seat (one of those bench seats) where I couldn't move my legs. Not a good sign. Then we started to drive down to Fremont Peak State Park. A small park but we went there with a purpose in mind; which I'll get into in a second.

Of course my parents being my parents they talked, bickered and talked even more the entire way down. My parents, really my entire family like to talk, a lot. We don't really fight ever, but we bicker. That aside though, we can really just ramble on about most anything totally oblivious to anything around us. It's a bit disconcerting for people. At least I know that every girlfriend of mine, and boyfriend of my sisters, has always had trouble dealing with my parents talking. Its not like that bad or anything, they're very friendly people, they just don't stop talking. And everyone talks over one another pretty much all the time. Outsiders coming into the situation for the first time find it hard, because they might be hearing 3 different conversations at once. The thing is, we don't really expect people to listen to everything we say, AND its perfectly acceptable to interrupt each other. I know I do it all the time. Anyhow, that's the situation Erica had to endure for the trip. I was actually a bit tired so I wasn't talking too much, but my parents as usual went on and on about the most mundane of topics. I mean really, why on earth would Erica care about how my moms personal trainers daughter married this man who wasn't any good to her, and then she had to move to Vallejo.... Exactly, it doesn't matter and she shouldn't care. I feel bad for her sometimes putting up with my family...

As an unfortunate stroke, the truck had its ABS light on for most of the trip, and although the brakes seemed fine, my dad was concerned about the mountain road up to the Fremont Peak. So we stopped at San Juan Bautista and really almost turned around to go home. That might've been a better idea though as the rest of our trip didn't turn out to be super fun. Of course that had a lot to do with the staggering heat. We did have one very nice experience over the weekend doing a short walk around the very pleasant Mission at San Juan Batista. It's a beautiful old building with a really amazing garden. According to the brochure it was actually built by "the happy hands of the converted indiginous peoples". I'm so sure they were all 'willing' participants in the construction. I mean that's such a bald faced lie that it's funny that they even tried to say it. Anyhow, after the mission tour we stopped at a gas station and realized that the ABS light had gone off, so we proceeded to head up the peak to into the state park.

The heat was just unrelenting, but we managed a short walk. Maybe I'll have a picture I can throw in here sometime down the road. Although I forgot my camera at home, my dad had his. Anyhow, we walked a bit, but really couldn't go far because of the heat. I was also unreasonably concerned about mountain lions. But that's just my head playing with me. :)

That evenings plan was the entire reason we wanted to go there in the first place, the Fremont Peak Observatory was hosting a public viewing night. They have a big telescope up top and host these nights once or twice a month where they give you a talk about the sky at that time of year and then let everyone look at the stars through a real telescope. Kinda nerdy, but still kind of fun, I mean I've never used a 'real' telescope before. Two things about the show bugged me though. Firstly, they had some intern from a community college giving the presentation, and he was a complete idiot. I mean for real, he was awful. Like what kind of person, who I assume is at least moderately interested in astronomy, can't even get the number of planets in our solar system right?! I don't claim to be some science nerd of anything, but really if you're interested in planets and stars, you might've, I mean just maybe might've heard that they officially found a tenth planet in our system (Sedna). Secondly though when we finally got to have a look through the big telescope, I have to say, I wasn't very impressed. I mean sure Jupiter looked bigger, but man I was hoping for like Hubble Telescope quality here. This was like, barely bigger. Quite disappointing. I'm can't imagine how boring it must be to do that as a living.

So with the heat and the depressing evening at the observatory behind us we decided to just pack it in, and go to bed. Which was fine. The heat made sleep welcome. And this was comfortable car camping, I mean we had an air mattress, so we weren't exactly roughing it.

In the wee hours of the morning though I had a bit of a rude awakening. Flies. I hate flies. In a way they're worse than mosquitoes, because I can respect mosquitoes. With them its like a hunt, sometimes they win, sometimes I do, but flies.... I mean what the hell is the point of a fly? They are literally there just to bug you; it makes me all crazy like. Anyhow, the flies got in the tent, and decided to make my morning hell. I would wake up kill like 5 of em, then go back to bed, and wake up 10 minutes later to kill 5 more. We have a rip in the netting at the entrance, that will definitely be fixed by our next trip. So finally I said screw it, and just got up. But it sure wasn't any better outside the tent. In fact, it was way worse; and I mean WAY worse. It was like out of some god awful made for tv sci fi channel film, Attack of the Flies. I was like eating them and getting them in my eyes there were so many.

We decided to take off pretty much immediately, which was apparently what a lot of other campers did too, because by the time we left, which was like 9am half the camp was deserted. Anyhow, we left our crappy camping adventure for back home, having not really seen anything of any interest whatsoever, and really being far to hot to enjoy even the hint of dried and yellow wilderness. When we got back to my parents house in San Mateo where we'd left the car it was much better. And my mom decided to take me out shopping, which I think was actually my birthday present from last month. New clothes are good. Very happy making. And I finally finally got myself a jean jacket. So now I can play out all my wildest 80s fantasies in the correct attire. I'll post a photo of it sometime soon.

And that was that, the end of another weekend. Work friggin sucks, as usual, hopefully I'll get something better sorted out soon. But probably not if I spend all my time blogging. hehe. I'd actually better head out now. Lotsa stuff to do. Ok just kidding there, but I do have all that comic con stuff to read up on. Talk later kids.

Oh and thank you for commenting Laura, Kelly, and Angie. You're all superstars and although I find it slightly depressing that no one in my 'real life' who reads this commented, but I guess that's the nature of Internet. Kelly I might have to take you up on your offer to educate me in the ways of blogging. I mean I've been writing for a few years now, but actually blogging for a community is different. I hardly have any focus here, and my writing style isn't even remotely structured... I'll give it a while and think about it though. I'm having a bit of trouble deciding whether I want like everyone to read my blog, or no one to. You know what I mean? Anyhow, thanks for indulging me, all 3 of you still reading. Talk later.

2 comments:

waveman said...

yikes - I had a sci-fi channel camping experience once, but it involved spiders... lots of spiders.

Anyways - maybe you should check out house camping - I'm growing quite fond of it.

Lisa said...

Geoff,

Fun Film Fact: San Juan de Batista is where Kim Novak takes Jimmy Stewart in 'Vertigo' (twice).