Ten on Tuesday
Today's ToT, things to take on vacation, could not be better timed, since we leave for our annual Rangeley sojourn on Saturday morning. It also gives me a chance to redeem myself for the camping one. I found that list quite revealing, actually, as clearly some people go camping fairly often and enjoy it; they pack the necessities without having to think much about it and then make sure they have plenty of fun things like knitting, books, bathing suit and towel. Then there are those of us who haven't been camping in quite a while, or if we have, it wasn't our idea, and our lists reflected all-too-vivid memories of being constantly cold and wet (that would be me), or having trouble starting a fire, or other vicissitudes of outdoor life. My favorite was Ruth, who got as far as 1. hotel reservation — I have to admit that this was my first thought also — and promptly and wisely abandoned the whole exercise.
In any event, since as always we will be staying in a nice dry cabin with modern plumbing and kitchen facilities, when making this list I can (mostly) concentrate on the fun stuff.
Ten Things to Take on Vacation
- Clothing, including plenty of long underwear, wool socks, and sweats. Recurring theme, I know, but in this case it's mere prudence: it is Maine, after all, in the mountains yet. Temperature readings in the mid-40s at 7:30 am are not uncommon. (I know this because 7:30 is when I take my morning swim.)
- Bathing suits and beach towels. See above.
- Matches and/or lighter for stove (gas stove, no pilot light) and grill. Inexplicably I failed to include these on my camping list, although I did think of them. Having read The Clan of the Cave Bear, I know in theory how to start a fire without modern equipment, but I'd rather not have to try it.
- Hammock with stand. Yes, we really take this with us; disassembled, it takes up surprisingly little room in the van.
- Spinning wheel. This year I'm thinking seriously of taking Wendy; ordinarily I don't tote her around, because she's quite large, but I've really been enjoying spinning on her, and I can take the wheel off the frame pretty easily if need be. Whichever wheel I take, I'll also take roving and other spinning supplies, of course. Miss B may bring her Ladybug as well.
- Knitting. This includes whatever projects are either on the needles or in my head, and all of the materials and tools for same. These easily fill a small duffel, with the overflow sometimes sneaking into my big duffel, and almost never do I complete more than half of what I bring, but what's a heaven for?
- Laptops, mine and Grant's. While the place where we stay preserves its rustic charm and probably will not get wired for wireless in our lifetime, the Rangeley Public Library is much more abreast of the times. We have even been known to sidle up to it when it's closed, sniffing for a signal.
- Cell phones. Verizon has finally colonized Rangeley, may all the saints be praised — we'd always been able to use our phones there as long as we were willing to pay an arm and a leg. Down the road a short piece in either direction we get that little box with a line through it, which means we've temporarily eluded civilization.
- Books. See my summer reading list, and also #6 above.
- Bug spray, sunscreen, hats, and pails. The bug spray and sunscreen are useful in a variety of settings, but all four items are essential gear for an expedition to the blueberry patch (no, I'm not telling you where it is, either).