There are two rule number ones.
- Set up camp first thing when you arrive at camp. No canned soup tastes as good as getting into a tent right when you want to. Otherwise, setting up a tent in the dark tastes really bad. One person can start cooking dinner–that’s allowed, so long as something is happening with the tent.
Done enough times together, tent set-up became a speechless dance, an orbit around 4 corners, going through motions only to do them in reverse 12 hours later. It reminds me of this dance, which reminds me to wonder whether it’s forward we’re moving or just around.
1. When there is a bathroom available, use it.
We used gas station bathrooms to empty and fill along the way. The toilet part wasn’t really essential: my standards and shamelessness developed inversely along the way. The sink part however, was essential, for refilling the camel back (I would definitely recommend a camel back. I was so hydrated I couldn’t think why I would stop wearing it once the trip ended…and here I am now with my regular old water bottle). As with anytime I take advantage of something that is not explicitly free, I felt like a pirate. No one ever made us buy anything though, so yup free water is out there peeps. Drink up. Comes in all flavors too. Water is sourced from the ground in a lot of places, in some you literally pump it out of a pump & it ain’t no Aquafina.
There were other codes of conduct we established throughout like –brush your teeth even if you’re super tired and it’s raining, pray before eating (we had three prayers: one in butchered Danish before breakfast, Shabbat blessings in Hebrew before lunch, and a fork in fist banging praise to God before dinner), wear sunscreen, and don’t cook in the tent (this was more of a Very Important Lesson Learned rather than a guideline).