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Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Camping We Did Go

I'm finally feeling up to reporting on our "much looked forward to" camping trip in our new Retro camper over Labor Day weekend.

My bed is the permanent one that is a daybed during the daytime. I share this space with Brave Heart, a Care Lion. I got the retro fabrics with just a touch of lizard. Right outside of the window, at the head of the bed, is a fantastic view of Lake Creek.

Although I didn't have the curtains all completed (I had to order more fabric) we put up the ones
we had, loaded up and went up to Lake Creek Campground on the side of the Sangre de Christo mountains around noon on Friday. We found a great site for our camper and son Greg's tent, and another site for other son, Doug, across and down the road (I do mean down literally). Greg, Mandy and Evan joined us a couple of hours later and we set up the camp kitchen and enjoyed the gorgeous scenery. Doug and Jennie would come up on Saturday morning.
Joe's bed makes up where the table stands in the daytime. He got the southwestern lizards.

It rained so hard and long that evening, that we cooked the hamburgers and ate in the camper. That is the best benefit of a camper; when tent camping we couldn't cook inside the tent.

We were tired from all the packing and unpacking and settled into our camper bunks early. Joe woke me up between 3 and 3:30 am with chest pains and very high blood pressure. I had my ever present medical emergency kit and gave him 3 nitro tablets at 5 minute intervals; I had him drink a bottle of water, in case it was altitude sickness; and then put him on my oxygen, while I switched to my shoulder pack. I had slogged thru the wet vegetation to wake Greg and while I nursed, he called 911 on his cell phone. Thank God we had service. I was amazed at how fast they got an ambulance to us to take him down to the hospital in Canon City; Greg followed them
down and I stayed in the camper with the children.

The grate was so uneven the guys had to put flat rocks under the pans to keep them from sliding off.

Joe went thru the usual tests and was kept over Saturday night. Doug and Jennie went to the hospital before coming up to the campground with Greg on Saturday afternoon. They brought their new 3 month old Pug, Cooper (short for Mini Cooper). Joe insisted that we all camp that night, since we were already set up. Luckily the tests found no indication of a heart attack, so he was released on Sunday and Greg picked him up and brought him up to camp with us for Sunday night. Needless to say, we all enjoyed Sunday night, with him, a lot more than Saturday night, without him, and worrying about what the doctors would decide.

Joe said he felt all right and went right back to work on Monday. The Stress Echo Cardiogram he had this Friday found nothing wrong with his heart. So the doctors think it was a combination of indigestion complicated by high altitude. Joe had so looked forward to camping since we weren't able to go for the 4th of July, as we usually do, and then had this happen.

I told Joe we needed to have an exorcism for the camper, since I went to the hospital the first time we stayed in it, and he was hospitalized the second time. We need to find out if the precious owner sold it because it was inhabited by bad spirits. This is all said with tongue firmly in cheek. We still love that little camper and Mandy came home with us and is sleeping in it in our back yard. It makes a great guest house for the grandkids. They even make s'mores on the gas stove burner.
In spite of everything, we enjoyed the lovely landscape of the Wet Mountain Valley and the Sangre de Christos; and ate great meals prepared on the campfire by our sons and daughter-in-law. Jennie even bakes biscuits in a Dutch Oven with coals from the fire. And I learned to appreciate our kids even more than before. I don't know what I'd have done if they hadn't been there with me during this time.

What do teenage girls do on camping trips? They text their friends when they aren't collecting flowers, acorns, leaves and berries to decorate the picnic table.
What do kindergarten boys do on a camping trip? What don't they do, I have multitudes of cute photos! Here he is in Cooper's portable kennel with Cooper's bone.


Debra said...

It's great your family gets together like it does; that is something my family would never consider doing. But, definitely find out what is up with that camper!

rianammerman said...

Whew! I'm glad nothing was wrong with Joe! What a scare! How nice that your family gets together to camp. I love camping, we have talked of getting a camper but Jim doesn't feel well enough. Maybe next year.

Kay said...

An exorcism or at least a blessing does seem in order for that camper. Glad everything turned out ok for you, but as Rian says, what a scare.

Sande said...

Glad to hear you're still camping, even though this trip was a little rocky. And congratulations on your newest great grandbaby!

Allison Ann Aller said...

So glad Joe is alright!!!!
I just LOVE reading about your family. They have fun, pull together in an emergency, and then go right back to having fun again....that is a very secure kind of love, rooted in faith and friendship.

Bailee said...

You have organized your camping trip pretty well.