My unexpected (and possibly unpaid) vacation: Day 4

This is my little journal from the government shutdown.  Today is day 4 (Friday Oct 4th).  This entry was not posted on Friday due to it being a crazy day, though.  Click here to see all of my government shutdown journal entries.

I woke up at 8am this morning and got busy getting ready for our Cub Scout camping weekend.  If the government were not on shutdown today, I would have had to take the day off work because the camping weekend starts around noon with a convoy of our entire cub scout pack driving to the campground so we can get there right when it opens.  So I think today would have been exactly the same with or without the shutdown.

So today in my morning rush, I had what we affectionately call “breakfast burgers” for breakfast.  Breakfast burgers are actually Tennessee Pride Snack Size Sausage Biscuits.  These little dudes are yummy … especially with a little Louisiana Hot Sauce added.  I want to thank my sister and her family for introducing these little nuggets of frozen microwavable goodness to my family several years ago when we were up in North Carolina visiting them.  Since that fateful day when she introduced them to us, our fridge has rarely been without a 24 pack on the top shelf.

In my morning rush, I ate on the run and did not sit in my Adirondack chair and enjoy my breakfast.  [insert sad face icon here]  Did I mention that I love my Adirondack chair?  I made it myself.  I’m so proud.  So after I scarfed down my breakfast burgers, I washed them down with a little egg nog that my wife surprised me with from the store last night.  [insert happy face icon here]  Can you believe it’s the first week in October and the stores are already carrying egg nog?  I’m not complaining since I absolutely love the stuff.  If I ruled the world and if I also didn’t care much about giving myself a heart attack, I would probably drink a half gallon of that stuff every day while it was in season.  My wife and youngest son hate egg nog and think it’s gross.  While myself and my oldest son think egg nog is a gift straight from heaven above.  Funny how one takes after me and one takes after her, isn’t it.

After my quick breakfast, I got to work collecting stuff from around the house and packing for the camping weekend.  My wife actually did most of the work.  She’s been collecting and checking things off her packing list for probably a week now.  I do maintain a small personal list of camping stuff that I need to collect that are mostly stored outside in the shop.  Here is that camping list in case anyone out there in Internet-land might find it useful or helpful.  If you don’t find it useful or helpful, please keep your comments to yourself.  🙂

Kurt’s Camping List:

  • tent & tarp
  • doormat
  • rope/clothes line
  • bungee cords
  • dust pan & broom
  • LED headlamp & flashlight
  • ratcheting straps & wire for tying down stuff
  • squeeze clamps & carabiner clips
  • leather gloves
  • stakes & hammer & hatchet
  • firewood & lighter & propane torch & kindling (only if not with the scouts)
  • grilling utensils & grill grate & wire brush (only if not with the scouts)
  • extension cords & multi-outlets (optional)
  • bikes (optional)
  • canoe & life vests (optional)
  • plus all the stuff on my wife’s camping packing list!

After I got all our weekend stuff moved into the garage and all laid out so I could see it, I started the non-trivial task of packing it all into the car.  This is like a life sized game of Tetris.  Only without the joy of beating your old high score.  I think every time we go camping we realize that we don’t really need quite as much stuff, so I think the car packing ritual gets a bit easier each time.  By the time I got everything packed into the car today I had a good 6 inches of visibility across the entire back window.  I think that counts as beating my old car packing high score, though, now that I think about it!  Sweet!   🙂

The rest of my day consisted of driving the family to LaNoChe campground with a dinner stop in Deland, setting up the tent with help from my oldest, hanging out by the fire with the other campers, going to the LaNoChe lodge to watch the movie FrankenWeenie (which I thought was pretty lame, by the way), eating a couple deli meat sandwiches for dinner, roasting marshmallows on the fire, and then going to bed.


The rest of the weekend consisted of mostly hiking from one activity to another.  This weekend included a lot of walking and our camp site was the furthest from all the activities which compounded the pain.  But we made it through and everyone had a good time.  I think all the fun activities at LaNoChe (like BB gun shooting and archery and swimming) distract the boys just enough from their leg muscle and foot aches to make them forget the pain.

It’s now Sunday evening when I’m typing up this blog post.  We had a busy but fun camp out with our cub scout pack and the weather was pretty perfect.  I didn’t get anything crossed off my to-do list, but spending a weekend camping with your family always trumps any tasks that might need to get done around the house.  I’m sure we made some lifelong memories this weekend.

What will tomorrow hold for this furloughed government employee? Stay tuned! 🙂


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