Camp or Die
If—like me and Sam—you are forced to stress about dumb things all week, like timecards and whether someone’s phone call got transferred through to the right desk, you need to go camping. When you work every day on a lot of things that don’t really matter, camping is the only way to fuck all that and have a good time being alive.
Unlike expense sheets and executive summaries, camping is about the here and now. Like when I had to crouch down on the floor of the car with a pillow over my head as we checked in at the campsite because we had too many people packed into one car. Or when Sam, Darin, and I tossed aside our clothes and jumped in the freezing cold lake water late at night. Or when Harry decided to hop around the campsite in his sleeping bag and Ian decided to tackle him to the ground for no apparent reason. Or when Carl dubbed himself the management of our campsite and ordered us not to make S’mores until after 9:30pm. Or when Harry stayed up all night listening for murderers and bigfoot to come into our campsite.
The only reason why camping doesn’t happen more often in my life is that it’s hard to plan. You have to schedule a weekend that everyone can come and then find a tent and pack gear for every type of weather. You have to plan all the food ahead of time and remember which cooking utensils you’ll need to bring and get ice on the way.
But camping is worth it. I firmly believe that camping is one of the few things that can save us from a life of self-inflicted misery. It brings us back in touch with our most basic human needs: fire, beer, and a place to lay our heads at night.
So—if at this moment you’re sitting at a desk, or wearing uncomfortable shoes, or have been inside for more than four hours, or are filling out an excel spreadsheet which, most likely, no one will ever look at again—then log on to vtstateparks.com and start planning. Whatever else you are doing, honestly, doesn’t matter as much as this.
What you need more than anything right now, is to go a couple nights without brushing your hair or taking a shower, to spend two hours making dinner over the fire, and to sit at a damp picnic table drinking a cold beer under the stars.