Sunday, August 19, 2007

Bunter, light my fire and turn down the bed.

I once had a job where I got to play at being a jet-setter. Planes took me back and forth across the country, often at the drop of a hat. Shuttles and limos took me to my hotels, hotels that were already selected, reserved, and paid for, without my lifitng a finger. Hotels that served free continental breakfasts and I could order room service for supper and just put it on the bill. Hotels where the sheets and towels were washed and changed and the rugs vacuumed everyday. By people who were not me. Other lesser beings ferried me to work, or rented me cars [to my specifications], cars that when they needed maintenance or repair disappeared and new ones magically appeared in their place. These same lesser mortals also took my laundry somewhere and brought it back - clean, folded, or hung on hangers [again, done to my specifications]. I ate every lunch at a new restaurant, or went back to the same favorite cozy little bistro everyday. I met fascinating people of all shapes, sizes, colors, and accents, in cities and towns I'd never even heard of. My bank account grew at a rate that it had never seen before [and hasn't seen since].

I worked insane hours, but the rest of the life was intoxicating.

So, yeah, even though this is much more my idea of a real camping trip, just once I'd like to see the wilderness the way the rich people do.


Steve Bates said...

Lord Peter might ask Bunter to do that. Or he might decide that wasn't sporting, and do it himself, and of course would prove marvelously competent at fire-building. (I thought I remembered you were not a Wimsey fan.)

I wish I were a genuine fan of camping, but unless it's the civilized variety (I'll do stuff myself; I just don't enjoy "roughing it"), and unless it's cooler than 90°F outside, I'd just as soon stay home. Sigh. Yes, my distaste for roughing it was a stigma the entire time I served on the local Sierra Club ExCom.

hipparchia said...

i'm a big fan of harriet vane, and i [heart] bunter too. you're right that lord peter would prove marvlously competent, and he's even likeable sometimes, but he's not my very favorite.

confession: i was going to use jeeves instead of bunter, but remembered at the last minute that you were a lord peter fan. :P

not a fan of camping, eh? i may have to blog a few of my more lurid camping stories then. they'll either convert you or confirm for all time that camping is for the birds [and the bears, and the dead body, and the raw chicken...]

Steve Bates said...

As a child, I camped with my family and enjoyed it. Many years later, I camped with a significant other and enjoyed that, too. In between, I was in the Boy Scouts... don't get me started.

Many Sierra Club trips are aimed at experienced campers who like a challenge. I was more of a deskbound Sierran... excom, political committee, letter-writing campaigns etc.

Thanks for catering to my wimsey, um, whimsy. As noted before, Wimsey, son of wealth and privilege, and optionally practitioner of unreconstructed idleness if he were so inclined, could well be a right bastard, but typically isn't, behaving decently more often than not, and attempting actually to do something useful with his life. (True, that's faint praise.) I agree with you about Vane and Bunter.

Steve Bates said...

Oh, I forgot... Stella and two girlfriends camped their way across southern Alaska a few years ago, and had a great time. I haven't got that kind of fortitude!

dogscratcher said...

Hey, thanks for the link! The guys we rafted with on that trip actually thought we weren't roughing it enough: they thought we'd be eating beans and weenies three times a day. At least one of them seemed kind of disappointed we didn't.

Some of the big Outfitters in these parts are trying to do something similar: offering trips where just about everything is done for the client. Table cloths and linen napkins, setting up tents with cots, it is a far cry from when I guided. I don't think I could be a guide anymore (even if I wanted to be).

ellroon said...

Do they also offer air-conditioned toliets without bugs?

I have had to fight off scorpions and black widows.. and it does rather ruin the concentration.

Then there was the time I almost burned a campground bathroom down....

hipparchia said...


ok, now i want to edit some crystal and fine linens and down comforters with duvets into your motivational videos. probably it's a good thing i haven't got video editing on this computer [that i know of].

thanks for posting, that trip especially, though i'm enjoying all of them.

i've never been in idaho or montana, but the scenery looked enough like colorado that not only was i vicariously enjoying your trip, but i was having lots of pleasant flashbacks to my own summer vacations as a kid.

personally, i like roughing it, but i do believe in eating well on the trail.

hipparchia said...

stella has my full admiration now [not that she didn't already, of course].

my 70-something grandmother and her 60-something sister drove a vw beetle from idaho to alaska and back one summer. they had a great time and made it without incident, except for that one spot in the wilds of canada where the moose that was bigger than their car wouldn't get out of the road.

hipparchia said...

my inner pyromaniac wants to hear that bathroom story, ellroon.

Keifus said...

Flaming outhouses? Man, that pretty much writes itself, yes?

My last camping experience was so horrid (drenching rain, screaming children), that I decided never again. It'd be different under other circumstances (certainly different when I was a kid, or an irresponsible yoof), but them family campground places seem like the worst of all worlds these days.

(And yet, I read about dogscratcher's rafting trips and I drool to go. I'm just the sort of yahoo that would kill themselves on one of those things.)

Oh, and I hope the Bondicks (or whomever) get struck by lightning. Nyah.

brjzvmve: junior bizness mover

hipparchia said...

i know. i want to go on one of those trips too. i myself keep racking up richly-deserved-darwin-awards-that-are-never-received. you could join me in this club, if you like.

[heckuva job in zimbabwe, brownie]

Keifus said...

I always wanted to be part of a club. Is it like the Stonecutters?

(Yeah, yeah, my first one described what must be a truly unpleasant job. I decided to go PG.)

ychqhf: Cauchy's hi(gh)-fi [those math guys rock]

hipparchia said...

like the stonecutters? i would imagine so. probably very much so. i wonder if we could get rich and famous....

[you can haf chiquita banana; i've forgotten it all, mostly, these days, but i loved proofs]