Last summer I planned a picnic with my best friend and her family for her birthday. We set off to meet them at Mt. Rainier National Park but – all of us being so accustomed to their convenience – we forgot that our cell phones would not necessarily work there. As a result, my husband, our daughter, and I ate the side salads, chips, and drinks at one rest area while my best friend, her husband and their two boys ate the sandwiches and dessert at another.
Although we spent a bit of time waiting, and a little time being frustrated, in the end we set out on a hike of our own and in retrospect had one of the best days as a family one could ask for. We took a short and easy trail, the aforementioned daughter was only 2 at the time, and discovered two different trees, perfect for my husband to help our daughter learn how to climb a tree. And more importantly, how much fun that is. She was literally hugging trees by days end. Forever the photographer, I documented the trip well and some of the photos are even in my “favorites” folder. It was a truly relaxing, memorable day.
Not coincidentally, my friend and her family had a great time of their own, in a totally different part of the park. If it’s any indication, they took a photo of themselves that day and then used it on their holiday cards 5 months later.
Though we laugh about it now, it was certainly a lesson about our dependence on technology, and the beauty of a day spent in nature. The former frustrated us to no end, the latter provided memories and fun.
We’ll try to do it again this summer, only with better planning this time around. Either way, we’re all looking forward to going back to Mt. Rainier. It’s a beautiful place.
Posted: Monday, June 7th, 2010