Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Monday Mantra: Try Something New

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Try something new

I apologize for the delay in writing this, however, I was recovering from almost being killed by a bear.

Sort of.

Let me explain.

Two weeks ago my boyfriend asked me to go camping with him and his friends. Camping? I've heard of this no-showering-sleep-in-a-burrito-like-contraption-out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere idea, but because my bed is so fluffy and awesome,  I had never given it a second thought.

Trying to win the annual Girlfriend of the Year award, and trying to be open minded to new things, I decided to suck it up and rough it like a man out in the wilderness of the Rose Canyon Campground site in Tucson. I was already nervous enough about the lack of amenities, but got a little more terrified with every bear sign we passed. And according to my professional calculations, we had passed at least a kajillion signs.

The night fell, and with it rose the memories of every bear related horror movie I've ever seen, ever. I had my trusty TechLite Lumen Master flashlight with me (which, oddly enough, has a strobe light setting for those wild rave parties in the woods that I'm certain you've heard about) to shine the spotlight on any bear daring enough to come close. Every snapping and cracking I heard was followed by me grabbing my flashlight and shining it at what ended up always being nothing. It didn't matter. I knew they were out there. Somewhere.

Eventually, we all went to bed on the rocky and super uncomfortable ground and I actually fell asleep for a bit until roughly 4 am when I heard the crunching of twigs outside our tent.

Crunch, crunch, crunch.


Crunch, crunch.

I was positive there was a bear right outside. I was also petrified.

There are many different types of fear in the world. The normal kind, where you see a spider and panic until you've squished that poor little thing to smithereens. There's the irrational fear of things like zombies and, in my case, werewolves. Then there's the kind where you are actually in a setting where something serious could happen, and in my mind, that's where I was with this potential bear near the tent.

As I lay there, not breathing so as to hear every snap, crackle, and pop of leaves being stepped on, I began to tremble in fear and think less than helpful thoughts like, I am going to die and not even in a cool way, like being trampled by hundreds of fans as I attend my record release party for my #1 chart topping rap album. Not that I have any album of any kind, but if I'm going to die in any way outside of natural death, I want it to be awesome. I also want that meter on my grave, for future reference.

After about five minutes, I also started to smell something weird. Animal weird, I decided. Using common sense and compassion, as I didn't want to be terrified alone, I woke up my boyfriend. I explained the dire situation to him in a hushed voice, outlining my keen detective skills of laying there doing nothing other than freaking out with every sound I heard and smell I smelled.

He sat there quietly and listened. Nothing. No crackling forest sounds at all. The bear had clearly heard me talking and was trying not to move as to not get caught in the act of trying to maul us. My boyfriend, after about ten more minutes of humoring me, decided there was nothing outside. I explained my theory of crunch + smell = bear and was met with a resounding laugh and statement that I was most likely smelling nothing other than him. I was neither comforted nor amused and was still very certain this most likely gigantic bear outside the tent had either not properly bathed in quite some time or, more likely, had taken a dump right near our tent. Theory two was what I went with. I was met with more laughter and believed even less than before.

As my boyfriend laid back down to go to sleep after deciding the crunching was nothing more than the tent flapping in the wind, I sat there listening to the fading sounds of what I still believe to be twigs snapping by bear feet. Eventually, and miraculously, I fell back asleep.

An hour later, out of nowhere, I was startled awake again by another unexpected sound- my boyfriend waking out of a dead sleep and laughing his face off. Apparently, he had not been sleeping and had decided breakfast with the rest of the gang was going to be the Best Breakfast Ever because of my bear pooping in the woods story. Such a supportive guy, he is.

When we did finally get out and about, I searched my little heart out for any signs, poop and all, of my alleged bear and found nothing. I guess I should be relieved, but a little proof to back up my 200% certainty earlier that morning would've been good.

And yes, the story at breakfast was a big hit. I will most likely never live this down.

Do you like camping? Have any favorite campfire stories?


Image 2 via Guy Sports

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