I was laying on my living room floor in front of my laptop, trying to pick a topic to write about for this article. I was freezing because the weather has been less than kind and the heater doesn’t seem to know that it’s winter. Well, that and I spent some time in the tropics recently; everything below 75 feels freezing to me now, so I pulled a down comforter over me, then wrapped it under me and there I was, a fluffy pig-in-a-blanket in the middle of the floor. And I was warm! And you know what that made me think of? My sleeping bag. My fluffy warm down sleeping bag that I only use for camping (not just for sleepovers or when I am too lazy to make the bed). And I realized right then how much I miss my sleeping bag when I don’t get to camp regularly. It’s been about three months since my sleeping bag and I spent time together and that’s too long. I mean, a sleeping bag begins to feel ignored, lonely and like maybe you’ve left it for another sleeping bag when it’s been a quarter of a year.

If you had asked me two years ago about my sleeping bag, I’d have shrugged and said, “Yeah, I have one, so?” and moved on. I’d spent so much time with my sleeping bag that we were a bit tired of each other. We’d seen each other nearly every weekend all summer and we clocked time together every month that year. I took my sleeping bag for granted. I never missed it. So now I realize the error of my ways and realize how standoffish I must seem to my beloved sleeping bag, and as soon as I am done writing this, I’ll pull it out, dust it off and cuddle up to it and smell it to see if it has any remnant of last season’s outdoor smell. Then I’ll ask it where we should go next. Because if you have a plan, it’s easier to execute it, right?

I hope you miss your sleeping bag, too, but just enough that you appreciate it a little more. Then take it out on a trail and make good on that promise to your sleeping bag and yourself. That’s what I’m going to do. Get out there. Your tent and camp stove will thank you too.

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