Gut Rumbles
 

May 10, 2008

A NIGHT IN THE WOODS

Originally PUBLISHED May 15, 2005

I like sleeping in the woods. Last night was partially overcast, so I couldn't see a lot of stars, but I didn't get rained on and the temperature was perfect. I always planned on taking Quinton and Jack down there some weekend, to that place I first noticed on my early exploration of the woods around here, but we just never got around to doing it and now it's too late.

I found lots of deadfall wood and had a nice campfire in a clearing about 50 yards from the creek. I didn't bring my fishing rod, but I did take a rack of ribs that I cooked and ate by the fire. I also discharged about 100 rounds from my non-existent guns that I took with me. I murdered every face-card in a deck of Bicycles before the sun went down.

After that, I sat in my hammock and just listened. The first thing you notice back in the woods like that is how quiet it is, until you stop to pay attention. I could hear the wind in the trees. Frogs and crickets were courting down by the creek. Every now and then, I heard something rustling in the nearby leaves. An owl piped up, asking me "WHOO?" I was for about an hour. It was very relaxing. I have no idea what time I went to sleep.

The morning birds woke me just before sunrise. They like to sing to greet the day, and they were in fine fettle today. I lay in my hammock and listened for a while as the woods came alive around me. I smoked a cigarette and enjoyed the concert. I had a Snickers bar for breakfast.

My fire was burned to smoldering ashes, but I went down to the creek with my coffee pot and fetched water to put it completely out. I listened to Smokey Bear when I was young. I didn't want to walk off and set the woods on fire.

I packed up all of my crap, made sure the fire was extinguished and trudged back home. I took a good, hot shower to wash all the dirt, gunpowder and wood-smoke off of me, and I didn't notice any obvious ticks or chiggers in the usual places you find them. I felt a lot better than I have for the past few days.

All in all, it was a very pleasant experience that intend to repeat very soon. I believe that I really AM a 19th century man.

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