First Night At The Camp


I woke up around 2 a.m. wondering where I was. The darkness in the country is much darker than the darkness in the city. For a few seconds I couldn’t get my bearings. The small camp bedroom seemed backwards, the door and the window in the wrong place, it was as if the room had turned 180 degrees.

The first night of the camp after 7 months or winter is a happy event. It’s a little like a rebirth, the end of a long anticipated wait. I think it may actually be the best night of the year at the camp. It’s a little like Christmas Eve, the anticipation exceeds the event.

It was chilly in the bedroom, the fire in the wood stove had died down to a few left over embers, barely strong enough to emit any light. The electric blanket underneath me on the bed felt soooooo comfy and cosy I debated whether or not to get up and re-light the wood stove fire. I also debated waking up Wendy and suggesting she get up and re-light the fire, but my survival instincts told me that might be a mistake.

But eventually I reasoned that lighting the fire would help to make it a little warmer inside the camp in the morning, so I got up and rebuilt the fire, sitting beside it for a few minutes making sure it was going to burn.

After I was satisfied that the fire was going to burn, I crawled back into the cosy warmth of the bed, the electric blanket doing such a good job of staving off the cold and dampness that was creeping back into the camp as the earlier fire burned out.

I laid in the cosy bed, staring up at the darkness in the room and marvelling at the quiet, not a sound except the odd snap of a piece of firewood burning in the woodstove. The darkness and the quiet is so complete, it feels tangible, as if I could reach out and touch it.

In no time I had drifted off again to peaceful happy dreams of the cottage season to come.


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