Aug 17 2012

campy camp

Let me just preface this blog with this statment:

I am not a pansy.

Contrary to what many people think, I do like camping.  I spent many summers camping with family and friends.  Yes, in a tent.  Yes, with outhouses.

This weekend Dave and I went camping for our holidays.  We were both very excited because we haven’t camped together for quite some time (well, other than the week that we spent in a tent in the mosquito infested jungle drilling a well in Bolivia…that doesn’t count for camping.  It counts as torture. Wait…I mean…”Yay! Well drilling!”) Anyway…the last time we camped was the second year of our marriage, and it was a great trip.  So obviously we were stoked to go again and make a tradition of it.  Some friends recommended a lake called “Ross Lake”.  It sounded super (and it was free) so we went.

As we pulled up we saw how pretty it was, and oohed and ahhed and talked about how fabulous this was going to be.

And then…

We got out of the car.

I’m not joking when I say that we were swarmed.  SWARMED. by mosquitoes.  I mean…it felt like we were back in South America. (except there was no fear of malaria or dengue fever mosquitoes)

I ran back into the car and told Dave that we were going home. (You may or may not know of my monumental fear of mosquitoes, brought on by our time in South America, as well as our time in Egypt.  I also swell up more than your average bear when bitten.  It’s gross.)  Dave, being the practical one (“We did not drive two hours out here just to go home.”) reassured me that it would be okay and we should set up camp.

So we did.

And then we sat in our tent.

The next morning we decided to drive to the nearest town and pick up some mosquito essentials.  A tent for around our picnic table.  More bug spray.  Citronella.

And then we sat in our tent around the picnic table.

It was seriously so bad that even being covered head to toe, and having bug spray wasn’t enough.  They were relentless.  Poor Minnie didn’t know what to do either.  That afternoon we decided to go for a bit of a drive to find the beach area of the lake, and possibly get away from the mosquitoes (we were told that they weren’t so bad in some places).  Then as we approached our car, I heard Dave let out a sigh and a “Ohh no…”

Flat tire.

This trip was not winning any points for being awesome.

Luckily Dave is a handy dude, and it was fixed in no time.  But still.

That night we stayed up late drinking cheap wine and smores, while I tried my hand at night photography. (be kind when you see my shots…I’m still trying to figure this all out).  And we decided that we would go home the next morning.

It was the best decision ever.  I can’t say I’ve ever been more happy to go home and shower (wash off the layers of bug spray) and sleep without the sound of a mosquito in my ear.


I was pretty stoked.  Can you tell?

Car games.

This bird tormented Minnie the first day.  We couldn’t chase it away.  It kept coming back and walking within inches of Minnies leash.

Dave forgot a long sleeved shirt and had to borrow my hoodie to keep away the mosquitoes.

Yeah! Mosquito nets!

Citronella.  Romantic.

Rockin’ our Mennonite Brethren conference mugs.

Angry pug is angry.

Swimming!  We later took Minnie in.  She was not a fan.

Waiting for the sun to go down.

Dave read dystopian sci-fi to Minnie.

Being a creeper.

The one shot of a shooting star that I got.  There were many, but I only managed to get this one.

Good night!  Sleep tight!  Don’t let the mosquitoes bite!


1 comment

Apr 13 2009

Mosquitos Bite!

We arrived Saturday in Wadi El Naturn only to discover that it is a desert oasis. Sounds nice, no? Think of it this way: Hot weather + Lakes in the middle of the desert = Mosquito breeding ground! The first night I counted 77 mosquito bites in total. Here’s a little breakdown:

Face: 10
Right Arm: 36
Left Arm: 10
Body: 5
Right Leg: 5
Left Leg: 11
Needless to say, we fumigated our bedroom nightly and coated ourselves with bug spray after that night.


Feb 9 2009

We made it through the wilderness, somehow we made it through.

One week digging a well in the Amazon Jungle.

Well, the hardest bit of Bolivia is finished. One week in the wilderness of the Amazon jungle is over. No more lack of toilets. No more swarms of mosquitos.
As you can see from my lovely attire, I was fully decked out in the latest jungle gear. Knee high socks, pants with no front or back, jungle hat complete with mosquito net dyed to the perfect shade of pale yellow. And the sandals. Oh, the sandals. They were the pièce de résistance. Rubber knock-off Chacos, bought for 7 dollars at the market. They served me well…
…if serving me well meant ripping my feet apart…then yes, they served me well…
But, there is a silver lining in this dark cloud of whining! We dug a well for the Yuracare tribe in record time, and they now have clean drinking water.
Normally it takes three days to dig a well. Often times you hit a rocky layer and it will take two hours just to go down a meter. But alas! We had no such trouble, and dug 43.5 meters in a day and a half.

The Yuracare tribe was amazing. They were very industrious, and clean.
The had an extremely high standard of living, which was very cool to see–considering they live in the middle of freaking nowhere. Earlier in the week we had stopped in to see the Yuqui tribe, and they were the polar opposite. Junk piled high everywhere. Old toys, clothes, and garbage scattered around the village. Houses that had been built for them were ripped apart and u
sed for firewood. I can’t say it was the most pleasant experience I’ve had in Bolivia visiting the Yuqui.
Thankfully it all went smooth, and we were out of the jungle a day earlier than we expected. Aside from the bounty of mosquito bites we brought back, no one was hurt or sick.
A jorb well done. :)