Yosemite is not exactly “to infinity” but there is a world of difference between daily life at home, and daily life in Yosemite. Camping is definitely the way to appreciate the finer things in life, like the smell of pine, the chirping of birds the smell of a campfire and the hum of mosquitoes. I was attacked by mosquitoes the first night we arrived and sported welts for the remainder of the trip, even after dousing unhealthy amounts of organic, environmentally friendly plant-based mosquitos repellant on every square inch of my body. I tried wipes, spray and lotion but the mosquitoes loved them all equally.
I have to learn to get into the zen of mosquitoes (the little blood-suckers) but since I have not mastered that yet, the respite in the wilderness did not provide a sense of serenity for me. I enjoyed the hikes and the amazing, huge waterfalls and the special family time, but I think that the next time I go camping, it will be during a cooler time, before mosquitoes hatch.
Returning to civilization was amplified by my attendance at a 4-day long course teaching the integration of the arts (music, dance, drama and visual arts) into language arts and math instruction. This was a great class and I came away with many creative ideas which I plan to use this year, but residing for 6 hours a day in the middle of the hot valley (110 degrees) in a run-down middle school, is a far cry from Yosemite, which brings me to the title of today’s post. How can I get beyond? Beyond living day to day, paycheck to paycheck, beyond the normalcy of my life? I have to take the leap! It is not enough to just desire to write, I have to live the life of a writer. I have found my first writing class and it is time to sign up. The infinity is my creativity and imagination and I am prepared to open the tap and let it flow.
The countdown for our camping trip has begun and the last-minute gathering of supplies is upon us. Time for lists and enlisting help! This is our first official camping trip in years, since the girls were younger and we were able to escape from the trappings of life more easily. Now, work schedules are unforgiving and three adult daughters have agendas of their own. That being said, it is a major accomplishment that we actually got all of our schedules to coincide for five days. Thursday morning we leave at dawn for the drive to the ever-enchanting Yosemite! This is the first place I ever camped, back at the age of 24, having just met my future-husband and willing to try new adventures. The park holds a dear place in my heart. We took our oldest daughter there when she was three and watched her play in the low river, ankle-deep. Another trip found the two younger girls captivated by the multitude of pine needles perfect for constructing small villages and houses, which kept them occupied for hours.
What is it about being in the forest that brings the imagination forward? I am looking forward to a reprieve from technology, a break from schedules and breathing clean, mountain air. I am excited about our new smaller tent, just for us. The girls will have their own tent this time. We are meeting my oldest daughter and her boyfriend as well as his parents, whom we’ve not met. It will be a family affair, complete with campfires, stories and s’mores. This is the stuff of memories; the ones we remember and the new ones we are creating.