It was a cool Autmn day in my small town of Spartanburg in South Carolina. There was a calmness in the air and a smoky smell reminiscent of a toasty fire to warm souls. This was the kind of day that I had dreamed all summer of seeing.
The alarm clock rang, alerting me that today was the day- the day of the family camping trip. I was not too motivated about the trip and my wonderful anticipation of this toasty autumn day had been killed., but thought I’d go to support my father. Afterall, he’d always supported me. Fortunately I would be accompanied by my younger sister who always had a way of making me smile.
“I know you’re so ready to get this show on the road,” my overly prepared camping fanatic father said. I could do nothing but smile with a pretend look of affirmation. I couldn’t help but think that this would be the worst trip ever but figured it was for a good cause.
On our journey to the Stone Mountain Campsite, I gazed out of the window at other cars of travelers, all seeking specific destinations, and couldn’t help but wonder what my friends were doing. Nonetheless, I was with my father and would make the best of the trip.
We stopped at a gas station about thirty minutes outside of the campsite for a snack. I entered the convient store and picked out my favorite pastry and selected a cappucino. My dad did as well, while my sister picked out her favorite candy. This was usual routine for our family when taking long road trips and was something I looked forward to. The cashier observed my family and questioned where we were headed. My dad proudly and heartily replied, “Stone Moutain Campsite.” I groaned. The discontent was now visible in my expressions but the cashier shared with us stories of her camping ventures as a child and assured me that it would be fun. I shrugged my shoulers nonchalantly and we continued our journey in the RV.
We arrived at the campsite. My father checked us in and we parked our RV in our designated spot and settled in like rowdy company that won’t leave. My dad started a fire and invited some camping buddies of his already at the site to join us in roasting of marshmellows. It was dark by now and began to get a little cold. Even though I wanted to complain, I couldn’t help but notice the smiling face and sounds of joy in my dad’s laughter. In seeing this joy, I realized that camping was a simple joy in my dad’s life. The roasted leaves, the smokey air, and glowing campfire all seemed to work together to warm my heart. This was the day I’d dreamed of all summer.
I’d realized that this trip wasn’t a trip that I’d regret going on, it was a trip that I’d cherish for a lifetime.
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