Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Camping and the Book Fair

I’m sorry I have not posted in a while, but I have been gone for almost two weeks and have not had internet access or time to make a post. First off, we went to the Home-school Book Fair at the beginning of the month and spent two days there. We set off at 6:00 in the morning and arrived at about 8:15 at the hotel adjoining the community center it was held in. We checked in, received our name tags and looked around for a little while before we (my sister and I, very much obsessed with chess) headed to the chess section. The chess section is in the corner of the community center away from most of the traffic and is in my opinion the best part of the Book Fair. I must admit I was rather upset when we had to go eat lunch at twelve o’clock and was extremely impatient to get back. 

When we returned I continued to play chess until we left to go and eat supper at a Vietnamese restaurant and go to a couple of Half Price Bookstores. At one of these bookstores there was a moment of panic and comedy when one of the people we were with, (it was me), turned a coffee machine on without the pot under it and spent the next five minutes trying to clean up the spilt coffee and figure out how to turn it off. When we got back to the hotel we went swimming and got in bed around 11:30 or twelve. Unfortunately the coffee I had drank (the spilt coffee which I had poured into a foam cup from the machine at the HPB Store) was caffeinated and I was up most of the night lying awake in bed.
The next morning we had breakfast and I was down at the Book Fair and at the chess section, right after the doors opened. There was a little crosswalk between the hotel and the community center which allowed for easy traffic between the buildings and was handy for running back to the hotel to get things. The first person I played was somebody I had played the day before and we proceeded to play a game (which I won). Then he had to go and I played three more people in between helping the chess-master write up cards for those entering the tournament that day and taking pictures. After lunch in the hotel, I walked back down to the Book Fair and passed several of the people I had played in chess sitting in the cafeteria so I talked with them for a moment. When the tournament started I was asked to score the cards for those playing in the tournament and I was very busy till I went to hear one of the workshops on filming. After that we left to go home. I played a total of eighteen games and won fourteen of those. Two of the ones I lost, I lost because I played the previous champion of the tournament who was really good. The only downside to the trip was the fact that I messed his (the previous chess champ) card up and so he had a draw with somebody else because he played black instead of white like he was supposed to. Now of course, I don’t know how the game would have turned out if he had been white instead of black but I cannot help feeling guilty about it. (The draw cost him first place which was probably given to his brother who he was better than but just never got the opportunity to play.) Anyway, we had a very fun time.

Ok, the other reason why I have not been posting was because of a week-long camping trip to Arkansas which we went on last week with six other families.  The previous post was fairly long so I shall sum up what happened. We got there and unpacked, set up camp and then went swimming. We swam across the lake and hiked up the mountain, ate blackberries and then came back down. We had lunch, swam some more, and played Ultimate Frisbee. A very awesome game of Ultimate Frisbee because my brother, his friend and I were on the same team against about six other people and beat them without giving them a single point. I must say that was very fun. Over the next couple days we had kayak wars with rented kayaks, threw pinecones at each other, played Frisbee in the water, swam a whole lot, ate wonderful camp food (including crawfish we caught and boiled alive) and danced. Danced you ask? Yes. We hooked up an I-pod to a speaker and danced for a long time. The best day would have been on my birthday, the 19th. (Maybe you noticed my little ‘About Me’ has changed to fourteen years?) We had stuffed blueberry French toast in the morning, had lots of kayak wars, went swimming and danced some more. In the middle of our dancing the adults came over and sang Happy Birthday and gave me some presents and then we continued dancing. We had a GREAT time. It was our last night so it was a very good conclusion to the trip. The next morning we packed up and went to some waterfalls where we swam down the current, jumped off rocks, and had two flat tires. (We didn’t have them, our friends did) Then we caravanned back home. On the way home we stopped at a Mexican restaurant (all of us, so about 26 people) and stayed there about an hour or more until we separated and went home. That was definitely the best camping trip I’ve been on.   

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