Sunday, July 20, 2008

Two-week Recap

Two weeks ago we crammed everything we own into the car and drove into the thick of 4th of July traffic for Zoe’s first camping experience. We were meeting four friends at a campground about 175 miles north of San Francisco, or about five hours with traffic and screaming. The camping we had planned was not really roughing it. One of the couples we joined works in the wine industry and brought a collection of very nice wines, complete with Riedel wine glasses. We had risotto the night we arrived, and Alison and I brought a king-sized down comforter to keep us cozy. As with most big state park campgrounds, the sites were worn down to bare dirt and the area surrounding each site denuded of anything that would burn. But the park was on a beautiful stretch of the coast and Zoe loves being outside so she had a blast spending her entire day playing around the campsite. By the end of the weekend her feet and fingernails were black and she had probably consumed equal amounts dirt and food. Sleeping in the tent proved better than I could have imagined. When she woke up early we didn’t have to get up to get her and we didn’t have to worry about her falling off the bed. She could clamber all over us and wander about the tent (only a two and a half foot person can wander about in a backpacking tent) and we could pretend we were actually sleeping without worrying that she was getting herself into trouble. Oddly enough, it all seems so much more relaxing in two-week retrospect.

Last weekend I flew solo back to Boston for three days for a farewell party for a friend moving home to India. I was secretly looking forward to uninterrupted sleep and late mornings. I was halfway satisfied; very late nights out and a three-hour time change meant that when I guiltily pulled myself from bed at 10:00 AM east coast time it was still only 7:00 AM west coast. It was great seeing everyone, but I was the proud Papa that took every opportunity to pull out the iPod that I had loaded with hundreds of photos of Zoe and show her off to everyone patient enough to sit through the slide show (or too polite to say no). At the farewell party I seemed to gravitate toward the other parents to discuss weighty issues like nap times, eating, sleeping and all the other important topics that I had politely avoided discussing with my non-childrened friends. I guess it just goes to prove that you can take the Dad away from the baby, but you can’t take the baby away from the Dad.

Recent Zoe photos:
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