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Talking It Over -- It's camping season, bring on the rain

As the weather warms up, many minds turn to camping. No matter if you would term yourself as a 'sportsman' or just a fan of the great outdoors, camping is a wonderful way to enjoy the season.

Over the years my husband and I have done our share of camping and while we did enjoy it, I have to say right now that you couldn't pay me to sleep in a tent again. It is not just the lumpy ground, array of bugs buzzing around or even the damp morning dew wetting everything inside. For me it is the fact that every time we set up a tent, crawl inside for a relaxing evening and finally fall off to sleep, a steady rumble wakes me. No it is not my husband snoring or even the people in the next tent. It is inevitably a storm heading directly our way.

During the hundreds of times that we set up camp, there were very few nights when we did not get stormed on. And when I say storm, I mean gale force winds and downpours. Rain that formed lakes in the tent overhead and crawled along until it found even the tiniest of openings to drip, drip, drip inside. Winds that, if not for our heavy coolers, suitcases and bodies, would have sent our tent into the next county.

You can hear them coming for miles when you are in a tent. The slow sounds of thunder and blasts of lightening are just the opening round for the big event. When all is done, it has gone on for hours and leads to a long and sleepless night.

When dawn finally breaks, all you want is a hot cup of coffee but first you have to either find some dry fire wood and start a camp fire or get the Coleman stove going and wait patiently for the coffee to 'perk'.

Maybe if you are lucky, you will have a chance to crawl back into that steaming hot tent, extra warm due to the moisture, and try to catch some sleep. However by that time the entire campground is awake and there is enough noise to joggle even the foggiest of brains.

After struggling to stay awake all day, you settle down to enjoy a beautiful campfire at night, the best part of the entire camping experience. As you nod off into slumber watching the logs burn, you admire the clear night sky filled with shining stars and hope for a quiet night ahead. Needless to say, in our case, that rarely happened.

I have to say that everyone should experience camping at least once in their lifetime. Hopefully your experience will be more positive than mine, but if not, I can bet there are a few farmers who may offer you a free campsite just to get the badly needed rain.