Dash Point Camping

I mentioned on Monday about taking Laurie Wagner’s excellent writing class, Telling True Stories, in July. Here is something that came of it – a moment in time.


“Nother murshmallow, dad?”

The sounds of my children compete in my consciousness with the sounds of so many birds, sparrows, chickadees and maybe a Northern Flicker? Was that a Stellar’s Jay’s shriek?

“Watch out, buddy, you’re going to catch that on fire.”

“Oh! Thanks, dad.”

I move the sleeping mask more snugly down over my eyes, and try to get comfortable on the air mattress. It’s surprisingly warm for being so early in the morning, and I kick one leg out of the sleeping bag to lay it on top.

“Nother one, dad?”

“No, Aug, sit down and have your cereal.”

“Ohhhhh…..,” so much disappointment conveyed in one word.

We forgot to bring pillows, so my neck is stiff, like it used to be from staying out all night at a concert. No earplugs meant the bird song choir started promptly at the first light of dawn, around 5 a.m. I wasn’t awake, but my husband told me he was, and it was like a switch flipped – the birds went from silent to cacophony in a heartbeat.

“Hi, mom!”

The tent window is open right above my head, and I peek out from under my mask to look out, but he’s not there. “Here’s me!” And I turn my head to see him at the tent’s door, like a magician who can throw his voice.

“Want to come in,” he says with his grumpy face.

I finally join in the morning. “No, Aug, mama’s coming out. Mama make coffee.”