Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Camping out... all summer long!

Hey everyone! I’m back. Who knew this summer would be so crazy that I would totally fall apart with blogging? Not that I was every really on top of it… But I have a schedule now! And I am going to keep to it! Here’s the plan:
Tuesdays are going to be my life and thoughts and nature-y things, and Fridays are going to be something a little different.
You see, I always have a stack of books on my bookshelf that I collect for one reason or another, but don’t get around to reading. Either I get too busy with school, or I got them for school and so neglected to read them out of principle. Even the school books are really quite interesting and worth some thought and attention. So, I am going to start a little book club. Each month I am going to pick one book from either my bookshelf or one that you guys recommend and every Friday I will blog about part of it as I go along reading and ask you guys a couple of questions. If it totally sucks though (as I’m sure some of the school books will) then I’ll just pop down to the next book on the list.

As you may have noticed, today is Tuesday! And so it begins with my thoughts and life and stuff.
What I wanted to talk with you guys about is my experience this summer. I have mentioned a few times that I have been living in a pop-up tent trailer with no running water or electricity. Which, at the time, sounded really nice to me! Being out in the wilderness and quiet while experiencing what it takes to be self-sufficient (to some extent) and eating what I grew at the farm. Well it definitely had a lot of benefits! It was beautiful and peaceful and a huge learning experience all together. It was, however, more difficult than I anticipated. I just didn’t really know what I was getting myself into.
One of the biggest things was the sink. It was a tiny trailer sink. Probably about one cubical foot or a little less. Oh, and no running water. So if I ever wanted to do my dishes, I had to take my tiny pot and heat up a little bit of water to wash my dished over a tiny sink and then rinse them off with the cold water from my 2 gallon water tank that I had to balance on the tiny bit of counter between me and my tiny sink. And that all drained into a 2 gallon bucket that I would then have to carry over to the porta-potty to dump out so that it didn’t go on the ground (no holding tank). So I had to be very careful about how much water I was using. Dishes were the worst.  Although, I do now feel that I will be very good at controlling my water usage. You become very aware of how much water you’re using when you have to carry all of it in and out. It is unbelievable how much water it takes to do a proper load of laundry.

That leads me to my second difficulty, which was laundry. At first I was excited to do laundry. I saw this cool bucket idea on Pinterest where you take a five gallon bucket and a plunger. You cut holes in the rubber of the plunger, fill the bucket with clothes, water and detergent and then use the plunger as the agitator. It’s just like a man-powered washing machine! I build my own clothes line to go with it and it was beautiful! I was all set to go. So I did my laundry. I had to go get more water because I was silly enough to think that I could wash with one bucket of water and rinse with another. Really it’s another three to rinse. I also didn’t realize that to do it that way, you have to agitate that thing for hours!! So my first load went in smelling bad and came out smelling bad… I took a weekend trip to my parents’ place to do a load there…
Those were a few good lessons. Have a better plan for waste water than a two gallon bucket, get a big tub for dishes, and either wait until you have hours to kill before doing laundry, or just visit someone with a machine. But that said, it was a wonderful experience that I am very glad to have done and may even do it again sometime… just with a little more forethought.

What has camping (or lack thereof) thought you?  


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