Mr. Basketmaker Speaks: Doodie

My poor Lynne has had a heavy workload since arriving home from our latest trip. Last night she only had 3 hours of sleep and was back working at 4 this morning. She informed me that the blog is being neglected and asked if I could please write her post tonight.

I think my exact words were “What?”

Then she said, just go do your “Mr. Basketmaker Speaks” thingy.

Now, the whole being creative on demand has always bothered me. Then, Lynne reminds me that this is what she does everyday and to just do it.

I’m still trying to figure out what the “Mr. Basketmaker Speaks” thingy is. I usually just ramble about nothing specific.

Just give me some time,  I will come up with something.

I’m thinking, I’m thinking, still nothing. I really can’t think of anything worth writing about. Well, we  did arrive home to Manchester less than a week ago. Not much other than that.

Oh, we did have that downpour where water came in the basement last night.

Did I say that Chance our dog looks really bored with us. I think he misses his three-mile walks with Lynne’s daddy (That’s what she calls her father. I simply call him “Bob.” Want to make sure everyone knows that.)

Oh, wait there was something funny, that you should like.

You may not know that Lynne loves to go camping. Well, she does. Note out to Maine Eric (the Sherpa), she saw her doctor yesterday and is not going to die from that spider bite. (Actually, four spider bites. And they sure did look pretty nasty.) Anyway, what Lynne really doesn’t like is bathrooms. Restaurant bathrooms, Rest Area bathrooms and most especially, campground bathrooms because they are the most gross places on the planet.  I’ve even heard her say that our own bathroom gives her the heebie-jeebies (Another one of her words, not mine).

One day before leaving for our trip, a UPS driver delivered a package to the house. It was a small narrow box from ebay. Lynne was out at the time and being curious, I opened the box. You want to know what it was? Let’s just say it was a little contraption that she could use if the bathrooms were just too nasty. I don’t think I should talk about it anymore, since it will embarrass her, but I need to add that there is a whole plastic “doodie” bag system with this little thing!

Hopefully she’s too busy to check what I just wrote. Enjoy and see you next time the “Basketmaker Speaks.” —Eric

Five Questions Friday: Spiders

Q: What is the best thing about camping?
Eric: Getting in the woods and away from people.

Q: What is the worst thing about camping.
Eric: Spider bites. Lynne was bitten multiple times — see photos I took. Also, the whole bathroom issue. When you have to use a gross bathroom first thing in the morning is not the best way to start the day.  (Editor’s Note: Eric did take pictures of several of my bites but the images may make some a little queasy. So I decided not to post them. This is not exactly a medical blog. If anyone is that curious, I’ll email you the pics. I will say that all the bites really hurt! And one of them is now three inches in diameter!)

Q: Any new things you learned about camping this time around?
Eric: Yes. Tent camping at an RV site can be limited, but if you find the right campground, it can really be a good option. We found a place in Tennessee that only had five tent sites. We were the only ones tent camping there which makes for a perfect private camping experience. And since most people have bathrooms in their big fancy RV’s, the campground facilities are hardly used! So they were very clean.

Q: How about any new camping cooking tips?
Eric: Have a back up plan for when the weather is bad. This Camp’s Chef has a great little butane stove that will cook what you need under cover when the rain is pouring down. Have a can of beans or canned potatoes for home fries. A stove like this can boil water for coffee or heat up tomato soup. It also makes for an emergency stove when the power goes out at home.

Q: So glad you brought up the butane stove. Do you recall any incidents that happened with it that you might want to share with others?
Eric: Yeah. Don’t put it too close to your tent screen. It will burn a nice hole in it. Even worse if your wife tells you that you’re too close and you could burn a hole in the screen and you ignore her advice.

Travel Tip #6: Fire Starter

If you are planning on going camping this summer, don’t forget to bring dryer lint! Yes, I said dryer lint. Some time ago, I read online about how dryer lint is a great fire starter. So over the winter, I found a use for all those oatmeal cardboard containers and filled them with lint emptied from our dryer. And I was able to test out the effectiveness while camping over the weekend. And sure enough, lint is, indeed, a great fire starter! Especially if you forget to feed the fire with more wood and it starts to go out. Just toss in some lint and the fire comes right back!