Camping on a Boat

Featured image courtesy of Caroline.

Caroline and Carter came over this weekend. The last few times that they have come over, Caroline requests that they spend 2 nights. At a minimum.

It’s amazing how children learn. And how quick.

Photography Lessons

For about the last six months, Caroline asks to take pictures with my DSLR whenever I have it out. It was sitting on the settee when they arrived because I had been taking pics of the Flume UL 30 sleeping bag. I’ve shown her how to turn it on, how to review the pics that she takes, and given her some simple pointers when she asks why her latest pic is blurry or dark: be still and hold the camera steady, there wasn’t enough light.

I can remember when I was just enamored with the simple act of taking pics. Just enjoying clicking the shutter. Then it suddenly became about the results. *sigh* She’s still in the phase where she is just enjoying clicking the shutter release. But, her questions signal that she is becoming more interested in the results as well.

During one of her photo sets, she had asked why her pics were dark. I had said that there wasn’t enough light for the camera to capture the image and I opened some of the curtains to let more light in. That evening we closed them again.

The next day, she had the camera and was snapping off shots.

“Grandad, why is the camera going ‘shick . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . shick’ instead ‘shick, shick’?”

She was asking why the shutter speed was slow.

“There’s not enough light, so the shutter has to stay open longer to allow more light in.”

“I know what to do.” She jumped up on the settee and began opening curtains. And immediately, the camera was going “shick, shick” again.

Here’s a sample of her pictures

Tea Kettle from a Child's POV
Tea Kettle from a Child’s POV
What Everyone Should Be
What Everyone Should Be
Morning Grouch
Morning Grouch
That is Not My Drink. Honest!
That is Not My Drink. Honest!
Rare and Elusive Pic of Clint
Grandad, your glasses have to be on for the pic.
Cyclops
Cyclops Sees US!!
Here she had me set the camera to “auto”, as she put it. Timed shutter release.
Happy Cyclops Monster
Happy Cyclops Monster
Dead Light in Darkness
Dead Light in Darkness

AND that was just a sample.

Hiking the Seabrook Hike and Bike Trail

We needed something to do and Caroline is all about the outdoors.  So, we packed up some snacks and drinks and went for a hike.

Carter Hiking
Caroline on the Hike

Here’s my first attempt at putting a video on my blog.

 

You Can Camp Anywhere . . . as Long as it’s Not Windy

Caroline had seen the new sleeping bag and knows that I’ve been hiking and camping.

“Let’s camp in your tent tonight, Grandad.”

“My tent is a little too small for all of us to fit in.”

“Well, just you and me can camp.”

“That wouldn’t be fair to Carter. I imagine the three of us could probably squeeze in it, and I have no doubt that Nana is not interested in camping, but there’s really no place for us to set it up and camp.”

She then proceeded to tell me about all the grassy spots around the marina. And she was correct.  There are plenty of grassy spots that would normally be ideal. However, people regularly let their dogs off leash to run around. The first day that I received my tent and set it up in the grassy area that is in the center of the parking lot a small male dog off leash ran over and peed on one of the guy lines. Such is life. So, I explained what had happened and why it was not a good idea to set up the tent around here. She understood and said that we could camp outside on the boat.  Camping on a boat.  Who would have thunk?

So, that’s what we did. I got out the two sleeping bags I have and we camped on the boat.  I had not devised a way to have Carter sleep out with us, so he slept in the v-berth with Nana . . . in the air conditioning.  Still not fair to him.

Camping on the Boat

The next morning she woke up and asked for the camera so she could “take lots of pictures”.  Of everything.  The water.  The dock.  The parking lot.  The boat next to us.  Everything is picture worthy to a child.  And in reality, that is a very true philosophy.  Everything is worthy of a picture.  Our memories are pictures, essentially.

We had to camp out the second night as well and this time I knew Carter was going to have to be out there. Living on a boat means that one must be very creative at times. I had been running through my mind ways to allow Carter to be out there safely. The cockpit seats just aren’t wide enough for two persons to sleep on one at the same time. If we didn’t have the air conditioner in the companionway hatch, I would have just made a nice comfy bed on the cockpit floor for him. Then I hit upon the idea of making a bed platform between the two seats and putting my sleeping pad on it as his “mattress cushion”.

Carter’s Bed Platform

That night, all three of us were out there going to sleep. Carter had crashed within a few minutes of laying down. I was on the verge of sleep when Caroline spoke up.

“Grandad, what’s that scary noise?”

I opened my eyes and looked over at her, trying to hear what she was talking about.

“It’s just the water lapping at the bottom of the boat. It’s nothing. Just lie down and go to sleep.”

“Ok,” she replied.

A few minutes later, “Grandad, there is another scary noise.”

A brisk breeze had come up out of the south. It had actually cooled things off and it was feeling pretty nice.

“It’s just the dock lines for the boat creaking under the strain of the wind. It’s normal.”

“There are too many scary noises out here. I want to go sleep inside with Nana.”

“OK. Go down below.” And she got up and went inside with Nana. Carter’s sixth sense must have sounded the alarm bells because about 5 minutes after Caroline went below he woke up, discovered that sister was missing, and also wanted to go back inside.

I was resolved that I was going to spend another night outside with my sleeping bag. And that’s exactly what I did. I love sleeping outside. It was a clear night and the partial moon was bathing the water in white light. The wind was just about perfect and with our stern pointed due south, I had a nice cooling breeze washing over me the entire night.

Lone Star Hiking Trail Thru-hike Food and Gear List
A First Look at My Big Agnes Flume UL 30 Sleeping Bag

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