I’ve struggled this week with writing any kind of article. I made a promise to myself that it
would not be a pandemic related post. “Been there, done that. I don’t want to hear about it
anymore! There are plenty of other things to write about right now!”

Now imagine me, two days after that thought, staring at a blank Word document.

So instead, I am going to dive deep into my memory banks and regale you (hopefully) with
some story time, in hopes that whatever I type out will eventually come to some sort of
thematic conclusion that connects beautifully and brings about world peace.

Ahem You may conclude to yourself that someone who climbs rocks must be a nature
person. By all definition, this would be a person that wears hemp clothing and knows what
leaves to eat in a survival situation.

I cannot speak for everyone in the climbing community, of course, but this is not the case for
me. I DO love nature. I love hiking it and climbing it and looking at it. But I am BAD at nature.
And I’ve come to the realization that maybe nature wants me dead? Let’s see what you think.

Example 1:

Two of my other friends and I decide to go camping on Galveston beach. We each had a dog in
tow, borrowed my brother’s truck, and set out for a girl’s weekend of adventure!

We get our tent up and start settling in. Now let me tell you, we thought the bay breeze would
bring some coolness, but it was hotter than hell. Satan would not be out in that kinda heat.

Then the storm came. We all sat in our tent as lightning, wind, rain, and hail spilled around us.
Fine, fine…we had shelter, right?

Until one of the poles started to shift. We all started grabbing on, trying to hold our little
makeshift home together. It, of course, collapsed, leaving us running in the deluge with our
dogs (mine was just irritated we woke him from his nap, he would have slept in that collapsed
tent heap all night), trying to throw everything in the truck and make a quick escape.

Side note: This event also resulted in us terrifying my friend’s husband, who did not expect
three women to be sleeping in his front room when he came out to the kitchen in the middle of
the night bare nekkid.

Example 2:

Another camping experience. Out at Lake Tahoe, surrounded by hundreds of other campers,
my siblings and I had convinced ourselves there was a bear outside our tent. We heard
DEFINITE chewing.

“Even if it was a bear, you’d probably be fine, Jen.”

YEAH, OK, I KNOW, BUT LISTEN, I had just watched Grizzly Man and I was pretty convinced I
would end up in a bear belly by the end of the night. If a bear was going to eat anybody that
evening it was going to be me! I had just eaten a meatball sub, I’m chubby, I’m slow…I’m
basically the perfect meal! So, when something brushed by our tent, we ran out screaming. We
may or may not have ended up at a motel. My pride dictates that I cannot say.

Example 3:

This is more of a general. Whenever I’m backpacking, camping, whatever. My body completely
shuts down. If you need more information about what I mean I will try to explain in a graphic.

That’s poop. I’m saying I don’t poop.

And I mean….it doesn’t happen FOR DAYS. THE ENTIRE TRIP. My body completely rejects the
idea of going in nature. By the time we come back down from our site, I’m harboring four days’
worth of food babies in my digestive system. Not sure if this is more or less enticing for the
bears, but probably more.

Now, you may be thinking, “Well this has nothing to do with nature, Jen. You just suck at
putting up tents and have an irrational fear of gigantic animals that can tear you limb from limb.
This does not prove that nature wants you dead.”

Maybe not. But at least it wasn’t another one of my COVID posts. Unless you take the “nature
wanting to kill you” thing and RELATE it to coronavirus?? Oh my God, that’s it, landed on
genius. You’re welcome. The end.

Jen Alger Contributor (theDIHEDRAL) @chubbygirlclimbing

31 Replies to “NATURE MAY HATE ME”

  1. Ha Ha. Camping, the great adventure. I have camped many times during many stages of life and doubt I ever got a full or comfortable night’s sleep, but there is just something about burnt campfire food that draws you in. Stay safe. Allan

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I recall being scared in a tent as a child, of an escapee of Dartmoor Prison (it was in the paper my sister was reading) who seem to be just outside, but turned out to be a pony.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. “Oh my God, that’s it, landed on genius. You’re welcome. The end.”
    I’m rolling. Between the hilarious and CLEAR drawings, they ARE HILARIOUS, and the zippity bop speed you ran me through in the side-stream to Class 5 rapids… what a ride. I’m going to walk back around and get up to the front of the line and take another go!

    Excellent post. Honest. Clear. And, MOST importantly… HILARIOUS. Love your expert sill in play with words in Nature… but real Nature, that would be cruel… like a real green dress (thank you Bare Naked Ladies band)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You’ve inspired me! I have my fair share of camping experiences as well, so many it would take a week of writing. lol Not going to put a damper on your lovely humorous post, other than to say, you are right to fear them four legged bear creatures. Oh, and my son shares your plight of elimination in the wild. We learned to not take him for trips longer than a couple of days.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Great post. I’ve had similar adventures. About to leave again in a few hours. Stay tuned! P.s. if that’s you in the picture you are definitely not chubby.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Constipation? Try diarrhea (because someone brought you the “gift” of spoiled (but not yet noticeably) steak when you really wanted to be carried down the mountain and taken to the Emergency Room.) At least it gave me time to carve a crutch between trips crawling off into the woods to see if I could dig fast enough…and the ER was still there three days later when I made it down.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Funny. I had some buddies almost burn down a tent while glamping at Enchanted Rock. That was pretty funny. And I too had a run-in with a bear at Lake Tahoe! Nice drawings too!!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Wonderful! You are a brave enterprising woman.
    My best story about myself on this subject is an all night walk across the tundra to see an arctic loon sitting on its nest. On the way back to the research station quonset I called home we stopped (thankfully) for what we English call a fag break (cigarette).
    “You aren’t really an outdoor person, are you Mandy?” the companion said.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Jen, my teenage son went through the same thing when we backpacked in the Big Horn Mountains. We were camping for two nights and three days and he waited until we got home to poop. The only time I ever went more than a day without going was in basic training. I went 10 days. I’m pretty sure I was close to having obstruction at that point but I was not going to be sitting there when a training instructor told everyone to get outside for drills or something. Now I’m almost 48 years old. I pretty much go anywhere, and not always on purpose. 🙂 Just kidding….sort of.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Loved it. BTW, chubby? No way woman. You look good. I can relate to the no-poop thing. I was always that way camping with the Scouts – never pooped until I got home. Same thing on any camping trip thereafter – no poop. Didn’t feel constipated — just no poop. Nowadays I’m more inclined to poop (which occurred too often while training for half-marathons) but not on a short hike. Peeing is another matter. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. It looks like I’m not the only one who has ‘fond’ camping memories to share. (I’m the blogger who set my camping fiasco memories to the tune of Twas the Night Before Christmas.) I can relate to the bear scare, too. While staying in a cabin with my family out at Matheson State Park, we were told that the cabin doors weren’t bear-proof. “Excuse me!!!” In the morning, we saw clear evidence that a bear had stopped by our picnic area for a visit. Unlike humans, they don’t have a problem pooping in nature… I loved your post and will be back to read more.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. 2 years ago, I experienced the great outdoors via a trip to New Mexico to hunt for a treasure. The thought of camping outdoors had crossed our minds but we decided to wing it in the car. 45 straight hours later, sore from driving or riding, that is one trip we learned our lesson from. Given a choice between camping in the car or on the ground after reading this story, I will stick to the car, lol. Thanks for sharing

    Liked by 1 person

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