28 July 2010

red desert dreaming

26 July

The fourteen year old has gone away camping in the Outback. I spent the weekend with him shopping for over a week's worth of food* that is light to carry and easy to prepare over a tiny camping stove, and doing as much pre-cooking as we could. He headed off at the ungodly hour of 5.00am with his sleeping mat and bag, hiking boots, a tarp (they sleep under the stars), several lots of pasta sauces, lots of powdered milk, and a rucksack full of homemade muesli bars.

His elder brother went on this same camp two years ago so I know he will come home exhausted, covered in a fine red sand, filled with awe over the indigenous Dreamtime stories, and about a foot taller.

I miss him.


* A week's worth, plus enough spare food for two days in case it rains and the desert roads close. Gulp.

11 comments:

Tania said...

Hang on ONE COTTON PICKIN' MINUTE. The link won't take me to the post so I need to know - is this the same SCARY camp elder brother went on? The one where I spent the week crossing my fingers? The one where I waited for the 'Don't Worry He's Home and He's A Bit Cold But Mainly Just Hungry' post? If so consider everything supportively crossed.

And 5am is too damned ungodly.

Suse said...

Link is now fixed.

Thanks for the finger crossing. It's absolutely pouring here in Melbourne right now and I am hoping that 16 hours' drive away it is a completely different climate.

victoria said...

Oh, I would gulp at the "in case the roads close" too!!

Sarah said...

All you can do is gulp, cross your fingers, and send them off. I felt that way about sending Helen on her singing tour through Canadian cities with a bunch of older teens and two adults I had never met. And Yup, she is also now about 6'10" rather than 5'10".

shadygrey said...

Oh, my boys went on those same camps! Snap, Steiner parent! I was worried sick and they had the most wonderful and enriching experiences. But packing the food for those camps always stressed me too.

Lynn said...

Holding a good thought, for both the waiter-at-home and the camper. I bet he'll have a stupendous time, just as his brother did...

zephyr said...

Isn't it amazing: the perspective from this side of being a kid? i remember feeling so not scared about adventures. Just being an aunt makes me want to keep them home, safe, forever.

Sending "stay safe, come home fine" thoughts 'round the world to you and your boy.

katiecrackernuts said...

I have one, 16, about to go to Borneo for 10 days, with his mum, my partner, and I have grave fears for his food intake. He eats, for lunch, what I take for a two-day hike. Seriously. Two apples, two oranges, two tins of tuna, two large sandwiches (and I mean burger size), two muesli bars and a protein shake.

fiveandtwo said...

Offspring going on interstate camps, overseas school excursions. The kids have a ball, parents pleased to have them home.
I must say when the eldest daughter had a sojourn in Europe and the UK last year, saved for in her Gap Year, I didn't worry at all (she's that kind of lass). My one big worry was her arrival home in Aus. Very disrupted flights from UK meaning we couldn't meet her at the airport, knowing she'd be exhausted and distraught and arriving in the wee hours in Melbourne.
It all worked out good. I am beholden to the inventor of the mobile phone.

Isabelle said...

I might be persuaded to go with him if I came back a foot taller.

Rae said...

Oh I love it. I can't wait until I can send mine to camp, although I will miss them. (Ack! Twinge in the maternal bosum!) But I remember the amazing experience it was for me... the foot taller feeling. And we weren't even in the Outback. (Just cabins in the Canadian North)