Dog Days of Summer


I cannot believe that we are mostly through June already, where has the month gone?

I promised myself that I would keep the kids active and outside, even if that meant going a little bonkers doing it.

We went on our first camping trip of the year at our favorite hot spring. It was a last-minute deal to fill in for a planned trip that got cancelled. I forgot a couple of things, namely that weekends are really busy and mosquitos are bad in June. And that I really enjoy it more when we stay in a cabin.

But we did it and the Scheissehund became a Frye with his first road trip, aka Unlimited Crotch Time.

The beauty of the hot spring is that we can luxuriate in the warm pools when the sun is low, when it is high in the sky the kids can run around the woods.

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Enjoying the pool

But the mosquitos were horrible this year so we were confined to our tent and the community house.

The thing is that the tent was hot during the day and there were naked people everywhere given that it is a clothing optional hot spring. Usually it isn’t a big deal but it being a busy weekend and us not having our own space, even I got a little weirded out by sharing a dinner table with fully nude men.

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Loony is wearing pants but he would be in the minority

Oddly enough women never feel the need to eat naked.

No one is ever inappropriate and they certainly aren’t sexy. Truth be told, when we are in the springs it feels totally normal but there is something about maneuvering a kitchen while dodging penis. Yuck.

I cannot fathom the depth of commitment some of these people have to nudism. I mean, the place was SWARMED with mosquitos, the sun is as intense as fuck (and I saw some alarming sunburns you-know-where) and it’s cold at night.

I’m naked a lot at home and in the pools but if I’m being chased by bloodsuckers, I’m dressing from head to toe with DEET soaked clothes. But I’m soft like that.

Most of all I just try not to look which is sometimes rather challenging. Like one morning when I was in sweatpants and a jacket walking the Scheissehund and I passed this dude and the only thing I could think was, “Well, it looks like I’m not the only one with a tiny wiener.”

Anyway, we got back home and I am re-evaluating if I have what it takes to go to Burning Man. As much as I would love to experience it, I’m not built for discomfort.

It has been hot as fuck these days and keeping with my vow to get my kids into the mountains, I picked a particularly scorching day to drag a whole mess of kids (and My Parasitic Twin) up to Nederland for a day hike to Lost Lake.

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No joke

It was, of course, a total fiasco because we split the kids up amongst two cars and agreed to meet at the trailhead. The other mom who was driving (let’s call her Red) said she was running late when I dropped a load of kids off at her house. I was like, “No biggie, MPT moves super slow. I’ll text when we leave.”

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Look who is super ready!

But MPT blew my mind by being ready to go with her kids when I pulled up. I texted Red that we were leaving and headed up to Ned. But then someone who shall remain anonymous needed to go to the bathroom and I was like, “No biggie” because Red was running late anyway. Only I didn’t expect it to take TWENTY FUCKING MINUTES and eventually we sent a kid in to make sure he hadn’t fallen into the toilet and by the time we got to the trailhead we weren’t sure if Red was already there or on her way.

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Killing time while waiting

PLUS, the trailhead was 1/2 mile from the parking lot but my logic said to wait in the lot but Red took my instructions literally (because I didn’t know about the head being so far from the lot) and we waited around until we decided that there was no way she was that far behind us.

I felt more than a little bad that I stuck her with one of my kids, another kid (that she knew) and yet another one that she didn’t know. Not to mention her own kids. So it was me and MPT with three kids and Red with five.

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You can tell by my face how hard it is to hike with kids

But she’s a PTA president and totally has her shit together and all things being equal, it’s good that the shoe wasn’t on the other foot because MPT got that squirrelly panicked look she gets when hiking with children.

We asked everyone coming down from the lake if they saw a pretty redhead with five kids and everyone said, “Yep, and she’s looking for you.”

I bet she is.

We finally caught up with her at the lake and fortunately she had extra food because I had all my kids’ food with me.

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Red rules. I offered to do her dishes but she declined.

The kids played around the lake and I pondered the great irony that so far our trips have turned into fiascos because the same kid just had to take a shit.

But you know what? It was a great hike and we got out of the heat.

I dumped my kids off at various friends’ houses and enjoyed a dinner on the patio of the Mountain Sun and actually felt young and in love again. It’s amazing what NOT HAVING KIDS AROUND does does one’s feeling of carefreeness.

Oh, and this car parked in front of The Sun which tickled me to no end.

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That’ll teach them to park in the wrong space. I like the meager attempt to scrape it off.

While sitting at The Sun we met a lovely man from Ghana named Kwesi Frank. He was staying in Denver with a host family and visiting Boulder for the day. He wanted to stay and check out Boulder some more because it reminded him so much of his home in Accra. We had lots of mutual friends (from my days taking African Dance) and naturally Lonny invited him to spend the night in our guest room.

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Walking home

The boys loved Kwesi. I was tired from all the hiking and screaming at kids so I hung back and enjoyed observing them tell each other about their lives.

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They pulled up Google Maps so they could see where Kwesi lived and taught in Accra and Itchy showed him the hospital where he was born. They also used Youtube to explain what inner tubing was.

Kwesi was so engaged with the boys, showing them his world and fully absorbing theirs. Then he watched the USA/Argentina game with Loony and I went to bed. He was gone by the time I got home from my hike the next morning.

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He said that he would be detained in Accra if he walked down the street with Blue because he would look cooler than the government leaders

Yes, it was a little odd inviting a man to stay in our house that we had just met, but he was so kind and interesting. We will probably never see him again but we got to share a lovely summer evening with him and the kids.

One thought on “Dog Days of Summer

  1. Pingback: Teton Part One: Batteries Included | Vivienne's Process of Elimination

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