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Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Bohemian Vacation

As a teenager, I read a book once about a group of friends that traveled the U.S. exploring the country and discovering themselves along the way. I always thought that would be a really cool thing to do, but marrying young and starting a family sort of brought responsibility into my life a littler earlier than most. I love to travel, I love to explore. I enjoy the adventure of seeing new places and meeting new friends. We a lways take a summer vacation, but they are typically very planned events as we travel with four children.

When we started talking summer vacation plans, we drew a blank. We can't afford to do the typical big family vacation this year - take everybody to Disney World or Sea World and spend a week in a nice hotel. When we broached the subject with the kids in the car, the response was immediate - they all voted to go camping.

Now you have to understand that camping for us is always in a tent, and always filled with wild, crazy adventures. Crazy things happen to us like our campfire exploding and raining coals and ashes on our site, bobcats sniffing us at night, losing the rainfly in a large, gusty storm, and, well, let's just say we are NEVER bored.

The funny thing is that most people's response would be, "I'm never doing that again." But no, we don't scare easy. We continue to go back for more. We love the quiet and the solitude in the wilderness. We enjoy playing board games with the kids at night, roasting smores, telling ghost stories, watching the stars come out, exploring hiking paths, and going for the occasional unexpected swim. Although last summer I did realize the painful way that if you don't have sunscreen with you, you should not remove your clothes to jump in the river on a crazy impulse.

As we talked, we hatched a crazy plan for a Bohemian Vacation. I suggested that we load up the camping gear, pack a few changes of clothes and just go. Anywhere. Wherever the mood strikes. Maybe go see Yellowstone or maybe go to the coast, or who knows? We could take nearly two weeks and just explore and have fun and spend time with each other with no plans. Our main expense would be the gas to get where we're going. Campsite fees are typically reasonable, and we would be eating groceries at home anyway.

This is a little out of my husband's comfort zone. He finds it strange that I would suggest that we just go on an adventure without any planning, but I think he is starting to like the idea the more he thinks about it. We'll see how it all turns out in the end, but it sounds like fun to me. And a guarantee for more great Kemp family vacation stories.

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