Well we are back from camping in Cherokee, NC and I survived it. I actually had a great time. I love the mountains; the lush green trees and rambling rivers bring me a degree of relaxation that I only find there. I love to look up at the trees where the sun flows down through the leaves and to listen to the music of the water lull me into a trance like state.
The weekend started with us driving to the campground early on Thursday, we arrived around 12:30 pm and located a perfect spot right by the parking area and river. Our overly large tent would not fit on a tent pad so we spread out under a tree and begin to unpack all of our things. It took about 2 hours to get everything set up with sleeping tent and shade tent and grills and such. As we were setting up others begin to arrive and go through the same rituals we had just endured. By early evening we were all settled in and begin to socialize. It was an early night as we were all a bit tired from the packing and unpacking and setting up. About 1 am the rain begin to come down in sheets and thunder and lightening joined in. Inside the tent it sounded as if a monsoon had arrived, it was the first time I had ever been rained on while camping and I was amazed at how loud it was.
Friday morning begin overcast but that did not stop the kids from playing in the river and floating the whitewater. My son had a particularly great time floating down these falls and did it over and over again, his lips blue and his body trembling from the ice cold water.
My daughter, Genevieve, spent the day playing in the shallow water and "river walking" on the rocks.
Friday night we attended a bible study under a large tent in the group camping area. It rained on us briefly but no harm done. After services we enjoyed the campfire and roasted marshmallows for s'mores. It was a late night and a cold one. One check of the thermometer registered 62 degrees, but with the breeze it was much colder. Since it was JULY, we didn't pack a lot of blankets, and by a lot I mean any..... so it was a very restless night trying to stay warm.
Saturday morning we awoke to a very chilly dawn, my son took off for his now daily ritual of bathing in the river. A bar of ivory soap and his swimsuit and he was off. He describes the experience as "better than a cup of expresso for waking you up". I have to agree. I had to bathe off there on Friday afternoon and it was very cold, but quite refreshing.
Sabbath services were at 2:00 pm so we cooked breakfast, prepared a salad for the fish fry that evening and got ourselves ready. A wonderful friend allowed Genevieve and I to bathe off in the shower of the camper that they brought. Such a sweet gesture that was really appreciated. The services went off without any rain and it was a informative bible study on the book of James. A nice fish fry was held after services and everyone ate well. The rest of the evening was spent talking, visiting, roasting marshmallows, playing ball, laughing and having a fabulous time. A super cold night again had all of us ready to head home the next day.
Sunday dawned damp and cold and we were up quickly to start breaking down the camp and getting ready to head home. The kids played in the center of the group area throwing balls and playing with frisbees. Saying their goodbyes and getting ready to head home.
In about 3 months they will all be back together again. Until then, it was a great weekend and we all had a wonderful time.