It’s really a tough job being a father in these troubled times. If you are like me, my “time of duty” for being a father has long ago ended as my children are all grown up and have their own families to take care of now. Nevertheless, it was a great disappointment that my wife and I had to cancel my son’s father day visit along with my grandchildren due to the Covid-19 virus. Both my wife and I are in the high risk category as we are over 80 years old.
My daughter sent me a father’s day card today reminding me of the fun that we used to have camping in the endless mountains of Pennsylvania when she was growing up. When the gas crisis hit around 1973, I bought an old Holiday Rambler travel trailer and had it delivered to a campground in Hop Bottom Pennsylvania – a place in the middle of nowhere but a place which was of great value to me as it was a place where I could reconnect with nature and just forget about the cares of the work week. My daughter and I used to enjoy playing bingo on Saturday night and then roasting some marshmallows around the campfire while listening to the night sounds of the forest before retiring for the evening. We used to enjoy flashlight hunting for bullfrogs at the little lake in the campground as we listened to their spring croaking sounds.
This year due to the Covid-19 virus and the need to socially distance ourselves from other people, there seems to be a resurgence in camping and boating that used to be such a great part of people’s summer’s 50 years ago. Of course there are those who seem compelled to go overboard and buy huge park models which are made for long distance travels, but here in the Finger Lakes Region of New York State, there are many State Parks available to enjoy the outdoors right alongside of some of the most beautiful Lakes in the world. With today’s modern tents and lightweight kayaks, one doesn’t have to take out a second mortgage just to enjoy the scene.
And so I would encourage fathers who have children that are young enough to enjoy camping to take them camping this summer. You just might discover that there are powers and forces far greater than the Covid-19 virus in this world. And you will develop some special bonds with your children that will last a lifetime.