Then we went for noon Sunday worship. It was held at an open-air amphitheatre. Quite a different experience from past church camps. A lot of people brought their lawn chairs and umbrellas. We naturally didn't have all these stuff. Just sat on the benches and moved whenever the sun shone on us. Midday sun glare is really hot, even up in Teton.
We then met a family that came from California. They used to be with the Utah congregation until they moved. The guy's an air force fighter jet pilot, I can't remember what rank, but very very high. So whenever the air force needs him to move, they all move. They have 2 kids> Luke (in pic below) is 4 and a younger boy is 1, quite similar to my kids. So Luke and the boys played for awhile. The parents, us and the Dowdys had a good chat over very yummy cookies baked by Brenda Dowdy, who shared them with all of us.
By the way, the Dowdys (below right) just bought a new trailer, and they actually helped us carry our stroller and some bedding up to the camp too, because we had no more space in our car. They've been a great help.
Luke's mom was also worried about the bears, but they stay in a log cabin, so they have less to worry about, because the walls and doors are the firm wooden kind. Dh said, if we ever come again, we should rent the log cabin too, regardless of the higher price, just for a better sleep at night, and safety. Just before we came up for this camp, a boy in Utah was dragged away by a bear from his tent, and killed. Very sad.
After that, dh and ds1 went for a short hike. And they took this pic from Colter Bay Marina, with the Tetons in the background. Me? I had a short nap with ds2 in the tent. I could sleep very well in the day! :-)
This is our tent cabin exterior (below left) and interior, showing the bunk beds and concrete floor (below right). The bunk bed section was mounted on logs, but the rest of the tent cabin was the normal tent material.
Above left: a stove for keeping warm at night and to keep insects away. We didn't get the chance to collect firewood on the 1st night as we arrived too late. but subsequent nights we used it, and it was much warmer.
Above right: signs posted everywhere, from the tents to the public toilets.
this is another reason why we think it is easier to stay in the log cabins. at least we don't have to keep shifting our things from car to tent and tent to car. With young kids, we need a lot of snacks and things all the time, so how can we keep everything stored in the car, including sealed snacks and empty water bottles!
The other compelling reason is the toilet. No toilet and sink makes it very difficult for families with young children. I have to change diapers for ds2 sometimes, have to bring ds1 to the toilet all the time, and then having to wash my hands so many times while tending to them. It is super inconvenient. And then at night, I have to refrain ds1 from drinking water, in case he wants to go at night. We can't let him anyhow pee cos of the bears too, as stated in the warnings. So we can't let him pee into a cup or something. I did collect water into containers for washing hands, but still it is troublesome, because the kids get their clothes wet everytime they wash hands from water poured out from the container.
Anyway I carry water so many times over the 6 days that my biceps grew visibly bigger!
Ok, the fun part: mass BBQ at night. At the picnic area beside Jackson lake.
Above left: foreground left - air force pilot, right - church elder.
Above right: dh BBQing corn and ds1 munching on a roasted marshmallow. foreground left with white cap - our tent cabin neighbour, who came alone, and shared a lot of his food with us.
Maybe he saw what we brought and took pity on us. :-) He brought a lot of fresh food, like watermelons, beef, ham, burgers, a 12 can carton of coke etc, which he all gave to us, saying he has plenty. He's an engineer and you could tell. You know our tents had no electricity right? So we were at the mercy of the elements and couldn't charge digicam or videocam? Even our cell phone had no signal.
But he invited us over to share his food and we saw what he did! He brought an adapter thingy, and attached it to a light source outside the tent. (He took the light bulb out). And he rigged it up to his fan, and it was not a small fan, it was a large one! So in the afternoon summer heat, he was enjoying the breeze. And then, he was using electric cooker so he needn't buy fuel too. Anyway he has been coming to this camp for 26 yrs already, so he is very experienced and very well-equipped.
Above left: the water of the lake is so clear!
Above right: brought kids down by the lake to play. they loved to skim pebbles across the water. anyway this fun activity transcends age, just take a look at the youth below, doing the same thing. :-)
Above right: some kids went up to lead singing too. they sang "Jesus loves me" and so on.
But we noticed a lot of people don't really sing. They do look at the hymn books but don't sing. Either that, or they sing very softly. So somehow, I miss the Jurong COC singing.
Congregational singing at Jurong always makes me very enthu, very uplifted and very motivated. I always feel like I am praising God to the highest. Really miss the singing back home.
Also miss the spontaneous singing after Wed Bible class, or just anytime when we are in the church building. Sometimes the girls, Eudora, Zel, Audrey, Medalene etc just get together to sing. Always makes me very happy to hear their melodious singing.
After BBQ, back at tent, collected and chopped wood for firewood. First we lit a bonfire outside the tent to chase insects away, and for light/ warmth.
Below left: dh trying to start a fire by friction, just for fun (we have a lighter, but just to let ds have fun watching fire light up spontaneously).
Below right: the resulting bonfire.
Above: dh sawing and chopping the wood collected around the tent. According to NP laws, any wood on the ground can be collected. Just as long as it is not living. There were plenty of logs ard, so we didn't have to buy any firewood. Firewood cost US$6 for a small box at the NP store. One night alone, we can use up 5 boxes? Cos every half hour we need to put in another log.
(btw, our experienced neighbour was the one who brought all the tools like axe and saw. so he lent us)
Above left: At sunset (9.30pm), ds1 swatting flies using fly swatter the Dowdy's lent us. See how few things we brought! If not for their kindness, we'd have lacked many things. There were many insects besides huge and aggressive mosquitoes. Horseflies were the worst, cos they kept coming and biting me and kids. SOmehow they didn't bite dh! So dh joked that he's either too dirty or smelly or his skin is impenetrable.
The bites are super itchy and swell quite big (bigger than mosquitoes') and also somehow doesn't subside for a long long time. We didn't dare apply cream, cos the bear warnings all say not to apply cosmetics or anything with a scent, cos the bears will come.
Above right: kids running and fooling ard the fire, they love the fire.