I Had No Idea The "weenie Flipper" Was For Camping Toiletry Needs!I really need to laugh, so I hope my "ignorance about camping" makes you smile............
Once upon a time, I was writing a story on camping trips with troubled teens and the lessons they learned regarding nature, team-building, etc. The young 20-something, athletic build lead counselor had done this sort of thing a zillion times. He was an ace and perfect to interview. A nice guy who loved kids, he also was the picture perfect candidate for my newsletter as well: great eyes, tall, dark, and handsome. The best part was he had no idea that he was good-looking and even better, he also had no idea that I had never been camping!
Since I had worked there for several years, I knew the program mission and the goals they were trained to teach the kids. Tim, my dear friend who led the other counselors and kids, offered for me to "join them" along this week-long journey of living off the woods, eating "camping food in cans," and enjoying nature. As much as I wanted to, unfortunately, I believe that was the week President Bush needed me in Washington, D.C.! hee hee hee So, I had to decline on that shower-less, bug-crawling experience! My character would have to remain weak, I told him! He just smiled.
I asked for some pictures of camping gear they brought along with them. He willingly took me to yet another building. He showed me the tents, the sleeping bags (did not resemble a comfy bed!), bug spray, and then brought out "the tool." The "Tool" looked interesting and I had no idea what it was -- my first hunch was it was some form of hot dog flipper to put Oscar Meyers on and flip over the 'ole fire by the camp site. Oh, my, was I wrong! I made some comment, as I TOUCHED THIS THING, and said how unique this was and I bet this made great hot dogs, and my friend just started laughing.
Have you ever been camping before? he asked. I said no. (At this point, he had probably already assumed so! ha!) Then, he explained that when camping out in the great outdoors, bodily functions occur just like in normal day life. (I loved how he suddenly turned this into a quasi-biology lesson for me.) He then demonstrated how the "hole digger" was used...............dig a hole, sit your butt down, do your business, then cover it up with dirt using the other side. I just stood there. I had stopped writing.............my mouth was wide open. All I could say to him was: "And you let me touch that thing?"
When I published the story, yes, I included the picture of the "tool" as a graphic and explained the process alluding it to teaching the kids about the harsh ways of life, taking responsibility, and learning to overcome what you may fear. Blah, blah, blah. But around the staff, I never called the tool anything but a weenie flipper. They loved and appreciated my ignorance and it made them laugh. Every trip, they begged me to go but somehow, I always had something on my agenda. Imagine. Busy people.
To this day, I still can't imagine using that "tool." I loved those abused/neglected kids at the social services agency where I worked, but honestly, I felt even more sorry for them after learning that little tidbit. Who would have ever thought you just dug a hole???
Now that I'm the camping expert that I am, feel free to consider me like Ms. Coleman or Bass Pro, etc. and ask for any advice or tips that you may need before your next nature call!
As I've always said, a happy camper is one with a clean pooper scooper and a fresh roll of Charmin..............what fun. And to think, they invented hotels/camp area resorts for what reason? ha! See you at the Ramada....................