Continuing Home

The ongoing saga of a Continuing Anglican church home, as seen by a member of the laity.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Continuing Camp

[Updated 7/20] "The best-laid plans..." It was certainly that kind of trip, for all that it ended well.

Things started off well enough Wednesday the 9th, though with the car stuffed to the gills and that only after last-minute decisions on things we really didn't need to bring. We even departed almost on schedule, the next to last time that happened on this trip.

We arrived at the Rogue River (Oregon) camp in good order early evening, but it seemed odd to see sprinklers going near the campground. Not sure whether that was a futile effort to keep the grass green or for fire control; there had been a number of reports of many big fires in California. Whatever the case, the end result was that the camp was not only hot but humid which led to a miserable sleepless night. If we'd been prescient we would have at least tried to enjoy the warmth but we weren't and we didn't.

We got up early, struck camp, re-packed the car (oddly, this time there was a little extra space) and headed off on the four-hour drive to Patrick's Point State Park on the northern California coast.

It turned out we were to be the van of the approaching Anglican Hordes from across the Diocese of the Western States; a full hour passed before the next car arrived. First things first: cell-phone signal: check. Internet access on the cell-phone: nay. Laptop Internet access via cell-phone: nay. Okay, there'll be no live-blogging from this camp. We spent the rest of the time having lunch, unloading the car, and utilizing our copious experience and lack of prescience we carefully pitched the tent where we'd get a minimum of hot afternoon sun.

Eventually, though, folks started arriving. And then we started hearing about the fires. Many folks had to find alternate routes through the mountains because roads were closed due to the fires. One family arrived not knowing if they'd have a house to return to -- anticipating evacuation they'd already moved everything important out into storage, so when the order came they were packed and ready. (Hopefully some Redding reader can update us on Linda's house? We've been praying...)

Our numbers were significantly reduced, even at the last minute where it seems a third of those who'd registered decided not to come. They don't know what they missed -- a covered community cooking area with running hot & cold water (and sinks with drains!), flush toilets, hot showers IN the camp, and electricity for charging laptops, cellphones, MP3 players and Coleman air-mattress inflaters.

Air mattresses? Yes, it's sad but true, our hardy Anglican Horde has gone soft. Throughout the afternoon one could hear the high-pitched whine of the pumps all around the camp. (True confession: these old bones don't sleep as well on sharp rocks as they once did so I had one too -- it must have been a banner year for the Coleman corporation.)

In any event by evening we were into full swing with the daily routine:

- Get up (slowly)
- (Re-)start campfire and collect around it
- Make hot coffee/cocoa in individual camps (for whomever is around)
- Make & eat breakfast in individual camps (except days for group breakfasts)
- Morning Prayer (for those awake or pretending to be)
- Breakfast (group or family)
- Morning outing and/or Bible study/lecture (for those awake by now)
- Lunch (on your own)

- Afternoon outing and/or Bible study/lecture
- Supper (except days for group dinners)
- Evening Prayer
- Supper (group or family)
- Campfire & PARTY TIME (but quietly, please, we're Anglican)

New things this camp: Not one group supper but two, and the second a chili cook-off, complete with judges. One group breakfast was planned, but enough was left over for another on Sunday morning, after Holy Communion.

Although we'd brought our "premier" 3-burner camp stove, they had to do without it. The equipment failures for this trip actually began before it started, when one of the old Coleman gas lanterns failed and the attempt to fix it inadvertently damaged it beyond repair. Then the gas stove failed (bad batch of white gas?). Problems with the fluorescent lantern rounded out the set.

Oh. And had I mentioned it was anything but warm? For all I'd checked the weather forecasts for the area, they seem to have been made for a spot a few miles inland. Right on the coast (and we were just a couple hundred meters or so from the cliffs) it was c-o-l-d! One started to wait for the afternoon sun to get warm, but on the second day a high layer of smoke from the fires moved in and diluted the sun. Oh well.

People enjoyed the location (or its amenities?) and thought it would be a good location to return to next year, though we barely had enough parking as it was. No matter, we'll come anyway -- the opportunity to spend several days with fellow Anglicans from other parishes is not to be missed!

{The Miller Menagerie have put their photos online at: or go to theirr weblog:>


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