I am just thinking back to a camping trip with my mother. It is the same story I shared at her memorial, but it is one that makes me smile as I remember her.
You see it was my mother who taught me to enjoy the outdoors. She taught me how to pitch a tent, bait a hook, clean and cook the fish I caught, and other things that you do when you go camping.
She also taught me the importance of being a lady. So I am just as comfortable out in the woods, sitting by a creek, or paddling a canoe, as I am dressing up and going to the museum or a theater.
One thing my mother was not happy about me during this camping trip, to put it into her words, “Catching fish with your hands is cheating!” We were camping at Big Rock Creek in the Angeles Forrest. The water in the creek is perfectly clear. I got tired of the trout swimming around my baited hook, so I slowly got into the ice cold water (it was a snow fed creek). I patiently watched as the fish swam close to me. When they continued to swim around me I quickly grabbed one with my hands. When my mother who was further up the creek saw me in the water she yelled at me, and told me I was cheating and that I needed to be patient. What she did not realize is that I had really wanted to go hiking and knew she would not let me go until I caught my limit. So I caught my limit by hand, and even though she had wanted me to throw my catch back into the stream, she let me go hiking . Of course I had to clean my catch first.
Sometimes I think that it is because memories like this I enjoy the outdoors and hiking so much. My other reason is I feel closer to God, and now that she is with Him when I get a moment to escape to the outdoors I can feel closer to both.