Thursday, May 14, 2015

Camping & My Biggest Fear

Anyone that knows me, knows I LOVE to camp. I mean the kind of camping where you find the most remote area in the forest and pitch a tent, type camping. I'm good at it too. I'm like the female version of Les Stroud, Survivor Man, in the woods. 
However, I have 1 very large fear. O.k., let's be honest, it's a huge bigger than life, fear. 

Here is a true scenario from a past camping experience.

It's pitch black, middle of no where, and we are settled in our tent for the night.
I am dozing off to a peaceful slumber when there is the sound of a large branch snapping near the camp.

Husband, sitting straight up, wide eyed, " What was that?!"

Me sleepily, " Probably a bear, it won't bother us."
I drift back to sleep.

A bit later -- A strange guttural growling sound awakens us.
Husband, sitting straight up again, " What was THAT?"
Me, " Probably Big Foot, He won't bother us, either."
I drift back to sleep with husband still wide eyed and sitting straight up.

Fast forward a few hours into the night.
I sit straight up, wide eyed with fear,  because I hear it. The sound that sends terror into every pore of my body. Husband is sleeping peacefully beside me.
I wake him up.

Me , my voice trembling, " We have to go get in the truck!" 
Him, " Why did you wake me up? I was finally sleeping."
Me, " I hear thunder."
Him, " Go back to sleep. It will be o.k."
Me, " I can't, it's getting louder and closer." 

My breathing gets shallow, my heart pounds, sweat starts pouring off my body as I start to see the flashes of the horrid thing I am terrified of.  Lightening! I start measuring the distance I have to run to get to the truck.  I try to calm my fear. That never works.
It gets closer. Lightning is flashing it's terrifying ground to cloud zig zags and the thunder is booming!

I wake up dear husband again and tell him, " I'm going to the truck! You should come with me!"  I already have the tent  unzipped and one foot out the door as I am telling him this.
Him, " I'm not going."

I barely hear this as I am sprinting for the safety of the truck. 
I get myself  to the truck. It's hot, miserable and stuffy but it's o.k. because I feel safe in there. My heartbeat returns to normal. The summer thunderstorm is upon us now with tons of lightning. I look worriedly at the tent, wishing dear husband would have come with me to the truck. I try to settle in. My plan is to wait it out and then go back to the comfort of the tent. 

Suddenly, this event happens.  Seriously, I am NOT kidding you, this happened!

I decide the storm has passed well enough to go back to the tent. 
I go to open the door and  a stray bolt of lightning hits RIGHT BY THE TENT! FLASH BOOM!
I am sure dear husband is dead in there. 
I am once again in terror mode. What to do... what to do...?
I finally manage to make my way to the tent where dear husband is sitting wide awake and wide eyed!
That single bolt of lightning had his attention!
He is fine, although a bit shaken.

Me, " I told you, you should have come to the truck with me."  ( I have no problem with "I told you so's") as I settle back into my sleeping bag to finish the night in peaceful slumber.

Dear husband has developed a healthy fear of lightning, thanks to my not so healthy phobia about it. 

My fear of lightening is like someone who has a fear of spiders or snakes. I happen to not mind either one of those critters, by the way. But lightening, lightening will turn me a raving blubbering lunatic!

I also know more lightening facts than anyone would care to know.
The average annual death toll from lightning in the US is 51. 
Riskiest activities for getting struck are - fishing, boating CAMPING and golf.  
I will never have to worry abut golf.


  1. Fun piece. Of course my idea of camping is a cabin with indoor plumbing and ac.

  2. Seriously funny! Great story! I hate camping (fear of spiders) so I really admire what you put up with! haha!