It's been a couple of months since we've been camping and I was so looking forward to this trip. Both of our birthdays (hubs and mine) fall at the end of the year and it seemed like the perfect way to celebrate. I picked Palo Duro Canyon for the festivities. I went once when I was about 10 or so and have been wanting to go back ever since. Hubby had never been so it was a perfect fit.
Normally we would take the tent, but given the fact that the temps were supposed to be in the teens at night, we opted to do a limited use cabin instead. The cabins are located at different areas of the canyon and provide a terrific view. The one we reserved had A/C and heat, a double bunk bed, refrigerator, microwave and table/chair. Perfect! The trailer Justin is building isn't entirely completed yet so this would be a great way to avoid lugging the mini fridge and other camping equipment with us.
As excited as I was, I know by now that life happens even on vacation. Here's a list of the many life moments that happened over the course of the trip.
- We left an hour and half late. Totally the norm for us, but still annoying.
- Audrey, who did NOT need to go potty when asked 50x, suddenly needed to when no restrooms were to be found. The side of the road attempt was interesting to say the least. Pull-ups to the rescue.
- We ran out of gas on the way. A first for the hubby and his ego is still slightly bruised over it. I don't know why, but I guess it's a guy thing.
- We stopped for a restroom break and whilst helping Audrey, I stood up quickly and hit the ever-lovin' out of my head on the metal part of the lock that sticks out from the door. Holy. I seriously thought it was going to bleed.
- We stopped for another restroom break (at a rest stop) and due to the trailer size we parked in the back and Justin went in to use the bathroom. Well......apparently the water wasn't working and in fact, at the FRONT of the building was a sign that said "restroom closed" along with several porta-potties that were supposed to be used. I feel so sorry for whomever discovered that the toilet had, in fact, been used. His declaration of, "Those were REALLY nice bathrooms! So clean!" makes this even better.
- Unbeknownst to us, the entire park is currently under a burn ban. This means no fires of any kind. So those hours that the hubs spent chopping up firewood? Pointless. Plus the added weight of it to the trailer....fab. And just not having a fire in general meant we would really need the use of the heater in the cabin as we wouldn't be able to sit around and enjoy the campfire in the evenings (which, I might add, is Audrey's "thing.")
- ****This is the big one***** Upon arriving at the cabin, hubs opened the door and promptly said..."Hmmm, well,.....I don't know that I should tell you this." Me: "What????" Him: "There was a rat on the wall." Me: "WHAT!" Him: "Yes, we scared him. He ran up into the roof." Me:....honestly I don't remember as the terror hit about this time. Yes, the cabin was rat infested. The way the roofs are built, there is an added wood drop down from the original brick structure. I don't know if it was done to insulate or for aesthetics or what, but it's a large enough crawl space for rats to get inside. I will continue with the rat story after the list is completed.
- The "heater" for the cabin was quite possibly the smallest space heater ever. And given the fact that fires were not allowed (there was a fireplace inside the cabin) it was FREEZING! I think I slept in 5 layers.
- I dropped a chair directly on my toe. The type of drop where your toenail bleeds from underneath. Joy.
- The morning after the rat stay (yep, we stayed there - again, will continue after the list) all I wanted was coffee. Wouldn't you know, the Keurig we brought (the same one we did a test run on at home) would not work. Not in the slightest.
- The morning after the rat stay, we were told by the park attendants that in fact fires WERE allowed in the cabins. Too little too late.
- During the course of the trip Audrey acquired a "baby seal" (it's a raccoon) that she fell in love with....then she lost. Absolute meltdown and wailing and crying and gnashing of teeth (not really, but the first two, yes). She was so entirely distraught at the thought of the poor thing being alone in the world even though I reassured her many times that whomever found it would give it a good home. Luckily, we were close to place we originally got it and we went back, purchased another, snuck it in mommy's purse and she is none the wiser. Nice save, dad.
- In a world where a Starbucks is on every corner, I do believe we spent half of the trip looking for one to no avail. We finally found one....on the way home....at 5pm. My frappaccino was amazing.
Ah, life. I freaking love it. And that is said with zero sarcasm. I wouldn't trade those moments for anything..well, maybe the rat one and the toe one; that hurt!!
RATS!! Oh.my.goodness. By the time we got to the cabin it was way too late to go anywhere else so we really had no option but to stay for the night. At first, I convinced myself that it wasn't a big deal. We set up camp (beds, food, etc.), ate dinner and listened to Johnny Cash as usual. Then we got ready for bed and oh my. You could hear them wrestling, and walking and squeaking. It was utterly terrifying. We've had coyotes walk through our campsite during the night and that was less terrifying than this. No joke. Audrey was clueless and slept like a champ, but not me and hubs. He would wake up every few hours and chase the ones that were on the walls back up (yes, on the walls!!) and I lay shaking under a comforter all night. When morning finally came, hubs and I looked at each other with a look that said it all...we are OUTTA HERE!! Luckily, the park attendants were amazing and fully refunded our money. We were able to locate a cabin at the local KOA and things got MUCH better after that.
All in all, it was an amazing trip. We are tired and happy to be home with our Woof Woof, but fear not, we will be back out there and at it again soon! This time in a rat-free tent!!!
Lots of love,
P.S. Enjoy the pics! Xoxo
|The "Rat Cabin"|
|The line up.|
|She's such a doll baby|
|Unicorn made the trip with us.|
|She was an amazing little traveler.|
|The views are so amazing.|
|Photo cred on these to the hubs.|
|Dinner for mommy's birthday.|
|Breakfast for daddy's birthday.|