I drove past Lake Ashtabula today after I picked up the girls from my Mom and Dad at Valley City. I remember what it was like when we used to go camping there. When we came down that hill that led to the campground a flood of memories came flowing through my mind. I loved going there. Us, along with Julius Vetter's, would camp there and of course bring our bikes. The fishing was good as I remember it and there were plenty of places to walk to.
We would first walk to the dock area and skip rocks and watch the boats come in and out of the water and my Dad would ask them if they caught anything of course. From there we would have to cross the highway to a little store where we could by ice cream and popsicles. As I remember it, I thought we could also rent boats.
I miss camping with my parents and cousins. I always remember them as good times. I had Scott to ride bike around with and we would go fishing, have bonfires. My parents seemed more relaxed and now being older and looking back, I wish I knew just how silly they may have gotten as they sat around the fire and had drinks late into the night. The only thing I hated was going to bed before them. I wanted to stay up. Now being a parent myself, I get it. I just want to put my kids to bed at least a few hours before I do so I can have some down time and alone time. But no matter, we had fun. There was two campsites on either side of the small lake. We would always do the site on the south side of the lake. I think Scott and I felt like the other side was like crossing the rail road tracks. Those were the bad people. The slums. We were young.
Nothing better than grilled steaks, burgers, and chicken along with corn on the cob, potatoes, pickles, chips. Oh and my weird camping favorites, vienna sausages and Frito Lay cheese dip. We would play outdoor games and go to the park. Take nature walks then try to fish some more. If we were lucky enough to catch fish, we would be able to grill up some fresh fish over the coals. I miss the coals. Gas is easier but I love the smell of burning coals.
The mornings always smelled of dew and our bikes and chairs would be wet from the night dew. I'd wake up and many times my dad would already be gone cause he wanted to do some fishing by myself instead of having to help us kids all the time. Many times I would go searching for him, but looking back now, I wish I would have let him have his alone time. We all need a little alone and quiet time once in a while.
I miss those days. So simple. So relaxing. So much fun. I miss those days.