So much has happened since my last tent adventure update. The last time I checked in I was livin’ large in a cozy sleeping bag on an air mattress with a headboard. Then two weeks ago, I was livin’ a little less large, in a sleeping bag inside of another sleeping bag, on a roll mat on the tent floor. Tonight I’m sleeping on a concrete slab.
The wind was crazy last night. The zip-ties that held the tent in place on the deck- all except 2 of them- snapped. Then the tent poles were almost bending in half, until one of the main ones broke from the stress. Then the whole tent collapsed. It was pretty cool actually. The wind found its way under the rain fly, and every time a gust would come along, it would fill the tent up like a parachute and try to carry itself (and me) away. There were a few times when it rolled me over onto my side and woke me up.
My tent collapsed into the shape of a Jack in the Box spicy chicken sandwich box.
This morning the rain came and soaked everything, and I had to take down the tent and bring everything into the living room to dry. Suzanne wasn’t super thrilled about that. Nor was she thrilled about my plan to sleep on the front porch. So now I have to break down porch camp every morning. That, along with the aggregate concrete flooring, should be enough incentive to get me down to REI tomorrow for new tent poles and carbon fiber zip ties.
Temporary temporary housing. (Yes- that’s a pillow pet. It’s comfy. Don’t judge me.)
Today on my walk I found a bird’s nest in the middle of the trail. So cool! So I built a human-sized nest of my own. I built it where three cedar trees come together, and took a surprisingly comfy nap until a squirrel started barking at me. It had a nice dry home in the roots below, and wasn’t going to give up his space without a fight. Good on ya, li’l guy! Clearly it’ll be awhile before I’m initiated into the fraternal order of forest animals.
Dandelion Wine is my all time favorite book. How good is it? So good that I’ve never even been able to finish it. It’s been 19 years I think since I first picked it up. I’ve never made it past page 50. My current copy is more tattered and loved than pretty much any other book on my shelf.
Ray Bradbury = magic. And Dandelion Wine is profound. He had a blast writing this book and it shows. I love his rhythm- not just with his prose, but with the way he summons the senses and makes me hear the bees and feel the sunshine, and how he can even make my mouth pucker at the taste of imaginary almost-ripe blackberries. When I read it, I want to be a writer too. Immediately. So I put down the book and pick up a pen. I do this year after year and I still halfway believe that someday I will actually finish the book. Honestly though, that could ruin everything. This book is an eternal childhood summer and I don’t want it to end.
(Ray Bradbury’s Dandelion Wine is now being made into a movie. I probably won’t see it, but man is it tempting…)