“Apologize like you mean it… And like you want a marshmallow tonight.”

…said an annoyed mom to a misbehaving 6 yr old, midway through our camping trip. Four children and four adults. Everyone had a good time, but there were moments with the children.  Reason usually prevailed, occasionally bribes.

The kids played most of the time, doing what kids do.

The kids played most of the time, doing what kids do.

We hiked to a stream which might have been perfect for climbing and exploring if not for the lush poison oak growing everywhere in sight.

We hiked to a stream which might have been perfect for climbing and exploring if not for the lush poison oak growing everywhere in sight.

What’s better on a hot day than a sandy beach on a river? The kids filed into the water and almost immediately turned around. Too cold!

The beach was a real hit. The children industriously shaped a mysterious mud pile while the adults relaxed happily.

The beach was a real hit. The children industriously shaped a mysterious mud pile while the adults relaxed happily.

Building the campfire was a highlight of the day.  The kids were satisfied to take turns with the cooking chores.

Building the campfire was a highlight of the day. The kids were satisfied to take turns with the cooking chores.

After dinner, the emcee took the floor and announced (with her Pellegrino bottle microphone) the evening’s entertainment: a talent show. All the kids performed, and everyone clapped wildly.

After dinner, the emcee took the floor and announced (with her Pellegrino bottle microphone) the evening’s entertainment: a talent show. All the kids performed, and everyone clapped wildly.

DSC05027

At the end of the day, everyone was rewarded with a marshmallow – or two.

However, the story continued even after the photos ended. Joe had our car-battery charger out of the car to charge cellphones at the campsite.  The kids were curious about this strange looking contraption. As darkness fell, the four children encircled the car as Joe opened up the hood of our old Honda and gave an explanation of the car battery.

The kids pointed again and again. “What’s that?” A battery. “And that?” A battery post. “What’s this?” Brake fluid reservoir. “And that?” A spark plug. A flashlight illuminated each part as Joe named the parts of a car engine.  To our surprise, the kids couldn’t get enough information and asked questions faster than he could answer them.

The next day everyone piled into the cars ready to leave the campsite. And in the strangest of coincidences – one car had a dead battery! (Someone had left an interior light on.) Joe pulled out the car-battery charger, and the youngest kid reminded him where to attach the charging clamp and which color clamp went where.

When the car with the dead battery started up, the kids were amazed. We four adults were amazed at how a look at a car engine could start up the kids’ interest. We really truly did not make this up.

June 2013

About simpletravelourway

Beth and Joe enjoy simple travel.
This entry was posted in Trip across the US - 2013, US - California and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to “Apologize like you mean it… And like you want a marshmallow tonight.”

  1. Isn’t it amazing to see children fascinated by things and having a great time. I would love one of those toasted marshmallows…can you send one over?

Tell us what you think, please.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s