I am not much of a camper. In fact, my idea of "roughing it" is having to sleep at a HoJo instead of the Hampton Inn. The Great Outdoors really holds no magical allure for me.
About once a decade I try to go camping, thinking maybe I just didnt have the right circumstances. Every time I am bitterly disappointed and cursing the day I was born(as well as those around me for dragging me to this godforsaken wilderness) When It comes to camping I am a Laman and Lemuel kind of Gal(book of mormon reference). I murmur, I complain, I lose faith, I murmur some more. Then i see the light and it lasts only a little while and I go back to murmuring and complaining again. I didnt camp much as a kid. If we did go camping, we usually had a cabin of some sort. It was never the tent and sleeping bag king of experience.
In 1990, I went to Girls Camp. My age group went a few days ahead of time to do some backpacking and camping. I actually had a great time. THEN we joined all the other girls at this pit of hell campsite. EVERY SINGLE AGE GROUP (except ours) got nice, cooshy cabins and dorms with toilets, bunk beds, air conditioning etc. MY age group got to sleep in Spider infested Platform tents. I dont mean one or two spiders, I mean the inside and out were COVERED in Big ole Daddy Long Legs. We would brush them off,(jumping and doing the blech blech spider dance) clean out the tent and 2 hours later could hardly see the canvas through all the legs and bodies of these bugs. It was horrible. I had visions of being suffocated by these Daddy Long Legs. WELL, most of the girls decided that these platform tents were not for us. So we had the option of sleeping in leaky, pup tents. Which was fine...for a day. Then the rain started. It poured. It blew. It galed. it rained sideways. It was miserable. To make it worse, these tents leaked. Everything got soaked. Clothing, bedding, shoes, accessories etc. EVERYTHING was wet. Then it started to smell like laundry that had been left in the washing machine for too long. It was a rank, wet, mildewy, moldy kind of smell. My toothbrush started growing mold that I am quite positive could have cured strep throat. My contact lenses got all clouded up and I couldnt wear them anymore. I had it. It was the last straw. I came home 2 days early, only to hear "wimp". Whatever. I was sleeping in a warm dry bed, wearing clothes that smelled fresh and not having to worry about spiders carrying me off in my sleep. As I was trying to explain to my mother about these horrible conditions (she thought I was being over dramatic) I started unpacking my gear and backpack. The mildewy smell hit her nose and as I pulled out my belongings dead spiders were falling out everywhere. I was semi-vindicated.
I have been camping 2 times since that fateful girls camp experience.
1999(middle of the desert in Wyoming with winds that would knock you over and mosquitos so thick your arms would hit them as they swung while you walked) and last week (virginia beach...lets just say it rained...HARD. Leaky tent, mildewy clothing. It is all coming back to me why I hate camping)
As my dad says "I am a Koch. We Koch's are NOT campers...we are Hotelers".