New Experiences

This weekend was supposed to be full of new experiences.

In a way, I suppose it was.

For Christmas, F’s grandparents gave him a pass to go up to the observatory at Cherry Springs. We decided to make our reservation for this past weekend, since our summers are going to be crazy busy from here on out.

I’ve never been actual camping before (Girl Scout camp, in cabins with running water and electricity, does not count), so I was pretty excited.

We planned to head up there at 3 PM, set up camp, hang out for a bit, then drive a few miles over to Galeton for the fireworks, then head back to Cherry Springs to look at stars and such.

What’s it they say about the “best laid plans”?

Yesterday, it was one of the hottest days of summer 2012. It was only about 97 where we were, but still. Then, around 3 PM, the heavens opened and unleashed a torrent of rain, thunder, lightning (that touched ground right by F’s parent’s house, where we were… eek!), and HAIL. The storm only lasted about 20 minutes or so, but it took down trees and basically destroyed the ground. Nevertheless, we figured that was it, and around 7 or so headed out to Cherry Springs (about an hour away).

F and I drove up, got the keys from Lyman Run (an 8 mile drive from Cherry Springs), and were headed back down when F realized his phone wasn’t in his pocket. After frantically tearing apart the car and checking his pockets over and over, F was freaking out. (To his credit, his phone is pretty awesome. It would be a pity if anything happened to it.)

At this point, it started to rain again.

We headed back to the park office. No phone. Finally I pushed my hand as far between the seat and center console as I could. Lo and behold, the phone. It must have slipped out of his pocket. Crisis averted.

By this point it was 8:30, and we really needed to get over to Galeton so we could park and go find F’s parents. There was no time to go up and set up the tent. Plus, it was raining. F and I finally made the executive decision to just say “screw it” and forget the camping – at that point, there was almost 100% cloud cover, so even if we went up, we wouldn’t be able to see any stars. Also, we’d be setting up the tent late at night in a place where you can’t have ANY lights (they’re quite adamant about that).

So we’re out $25, but no big deal… we’ll try again another weekend.

Even though it was raining, we decided to head to Galeton anyway. The rain slowed to a drizzle, and we somehow found a parking spot amidst the hundreds and hundreds of people who braved the weather to see an incredible fireworks display. We found F’s parents and joined them in the bed of their pickup truck, surrounded by drunken families, and waited for the show.

As soon as the fireworks started, so did the rain.

But the show must go on, and so it did.

If you’ve never seen fireworks in a rain storm, let me tell you it’s a pretty cool experience. We were pretty much soaked to the skin and didn’t even care. It was a bit of sensory overload, especially because the fireworks were SO LOUD (seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever heard such loud fireworks). But it was just really, really cool. I can’t describe it. It’s something you have to experience for yourself (if your town is crazy enough to hold fireworks even when it’s raining).

So that was that… After the show we spent an hour waiting to get out of the parking lot and another hour driving home, so it was almost worth it not going up to Cherry Springs (it would have been around 11:30 by the time we got up there, and we’d have to set up the tent in the dark and such).

So. New experiences — I got to see fireworks in the rain! I wish I could have added camping to the “new experiences” list, but oh well.

I also finished 4 books. That’s what happens when F has to work from home.

Now we’re at the end of the awesome weekend and heading back to the reality of school and work tomorrow … but hopefully the next few weeks will fly by quickly so I can head to Seaside and really start my summer! 🙂

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