Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: rain (10/17/05)
TITLE: Camping in the Rain
By Betsy Tacchella
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On this particular trip it had rained continually for three days. You might have guessed, we were in Oregon where rain is typical. Often we would just continue our travels on rainy days, all the while trying to stay in a good mood. But after three days in the van, edginess was my companion. All of our tempers were short and it was becoming harder to keep a good attitude. We needed to get outside of our cramped quarters, even if for only a few hours. But the continual patter of rain kept us inside.
Finally on the third night, we tucked the girls in bed, listened to the plunkety plunk of the rain on the roof and eventually drifted off to sleep. In the middle of the night, I awoke having to use the restroom. Groggily I slipped on Bill’s cowboy boots and my poncho over my pajamas. Just as I was about to exit the camper, I heard a dreaded sound, one that no camping parent wants to hear...the sound of a child throwing up all over her cot. Standing outside of the camper, I groaned at the obvious mess I would now have to clean up. In disgust and anger, I made a quick turn toward the van's front passenger door. In so doing, my head bumped the canvas stretched at the door of the van. Now filled with rain water, it jiggled a bit, then proceeded to dump gallons of water on my head.
By now everyone was awake and laughing histerically at their mother, standing in oversized cowboy boots and poncho, drenched from head to toe. At first the scene did not seem funny to me but as the girls laughed with glee, the tension and discomfort of three days in a vehicle suddenly released and I began laughing too. We all helped clean up the various messes and settled in for the rest of the night.
I have always remembered that camping story because it represents life. Sometimes the difficulties of life can cause us to feel trapped in small, enclosed places. Then something out of the ordinary happens and you can’t help but laugh. The Bible says in Job 8:21 "He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouting.” I like to think that it was the Lord who filled our mouths with laughing that night. Another place it says “A merry heart does good, like medicine.” Prov. 17:22 Yes, our laughter was good and as laughter so often does, it gave a fresh perspective.
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