Thursday, December 30, 2010

Cave lake

  My parents like to travel when we were small. Loading up the truck and heading off in the great big camper, it was a large, ‘ten and half footer.’ About the biggest and heaviest camper made. I remember one trip to Reno we took once. It was when I was 10 or so and we didn't want to go there in one day. My mother on the other hand did her best to make my father go as far in one day as she could. She would make him coffee and sandwiches. So he would drive through lunch. I remember sitting in the back following along with a map. I was getting late and I knew it was my job to find a place to camp up ahead. (Late meant just afternoon, because the camper became very uncomfortable when it was hot outside.)
  I spotted a place on the California and Oregon border. It was campground called Cave Lake. On the map it didn't seem far and it looked like it would be a state camp ground which back in those days meant free or close to it.
  We started up the hill and were there in a half hour. We got there just about 2 pm and set up camp.  My brother and I were responsible for job for leveling the camper using the jacks at the corners. While my mother fixed the kitchen and prepared the camper. This meant putting things back in the counters that rode on the floor when we went down the road. Dad would fix a fire and pay for the site. In about fifteen minutes we would be sitting at the table in them camper wondering what to do next. Mom would demand what we had planned would not be inside them camper.
  Lee and I headed off to see why they had called this place Cave Lake. It was quiet here. I remember it being a Wednesday. The weekend traffic was still a few days off if there was and to tell about ever then. The cave was covered in Griffith from the local highs school kids. It was a lonely place. We didn't stay long and it turned out that was for the best. On our way back we ran into my father. Well he was on the other side of the stream. It wasn't alarming to run into him. What was alarming was he was holding a gun.
  Later we found out that this was cougar country and that didn't mean football. There were at least two of them walking around the camper. We were not that scared but my brother had to sleep inside the camper. My brother Lee usually liked to camp in a tent, next to the truck and not far from the fire.
  When we left we got the chance to see one of them on the road as we left. It was frightening, to see the size o the animal.
  I suppose that not all my blog posts have a point but if I had to declare one about this post. It would have to be that it was a slice of what life was like back when my parents were still alive. Back when I was younger. We didn't stay in motels and KOA's (expensive camp grounds) we were at home next to a river on a back country road. Trees or no trees, we always found something to do. Sometimes we would have to wait for our view. Which meant as the sun set the really view started, the milking way, the stars and the deepness of space itself.

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