The Indoor Kid’s Guide To … Camping Trips

There comes a time in every Indoor Kid’s life when her character will be put to the test. Her friends are going camping; does she want to come? While her gut reaction will be, “Voluntary hardship? Heck no!” she knows that camping might possibly be fun maybe—lots of people list it as an “interest” on profiles—and she should probably try it once to know if she likes it. Welp, here are some guidelines that she (and you, Indoor Kid) should abide by.

boy eating s'mores1. S’mores. ‘Nuff said.

S’mores are really the only sustenance you’ll need for the entire trip. They’re like instant happy-makers. And you’ll be totally entitled to eat whole Hershey bars once you’ve spent the entire day on an incline.

2. Trail songs = your time to shine.

Singing on the trail will not only help distract you from the agony of having to walk more than a city block, it’ll also help raise the spirits of your fellow travelers. If you don’t know any good walking songs, invent some! Then teach yourself the harmonies! Then . . . Oh, what, we’re stopping for the night just so I’ll shut up? That’s not what I was after at all! 🙂

3. Volunteer for clean up.

Someone left garbage at a campsite = #Loser

Around mealtime, you’re going to be expected to take on some kind of responsibility. Where at home you would’ve popped in a microwave meal and eaten it within five minutes’ time, camping dinners are a whole commitment. You’re not going to want to gather firewood, do the actual cooking (whatever that looks like), or dole it out and let other people start eating ahead of you. The best course of action in these instances is to offer to “clean up,” sparing yourself the preparation irritation. Everyone else will feel bad watching you clean up alone, so they’ll end up helping anyway. You sneaky, sneaky Indoor Kid.

4. Be the have-r of cushions and bandages.

The number one reason people are uncomfortable on camping trips? They don’t have enough cushions! The ground is hard. Your feet are soft and un-calloused from your primarily sedentary days. Your tailbone exists. Why not preempt this pain by bringing an absurd amount of butt cushions, blister bandages, ankle wraps (for the pronating among us), and neck pillows? Your pack will be so full, there’ll be no way you could help carry those heavy cooking supplies.

5. Long underwear is pretty amazing.

Make sure you invest in some quality clothes for maximum comfort. Treat yo’self. You’re going to return from this trip being like, “I want to wear long underwear all day always.”

6. Do not go in the water.

Scary movies got it right: Nothing good comes from going in the water. Even if your friends are all like “Woohoo! Stream! Spontaneity!”—DO. NOT. SUCCUMB. You’ll just end up wet, sloshing in your shoes, and maybe leechy. So not worth it. Prove your spontaneity in other ways . . . like a scatting section in your next trail song!

What other advice do you have for Indoor Kid’s heading off on a camping trip? Let us know in the comments.

Photos: “S’mores” by OakleyOriginals; “Someone left garbage at a campsite” by Loren Kerns; “Nick’s sexy secret weapon” by JHayne; “Leech, Class: Hirudinea” by Greg Schechter.

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