Wednesday, August 13, 2014

a post on life, and that time that i almost died in an outhouse

For the last month I've been telling myself that I should blog. But waking up at 6:30am, and getting home at 6:30pm hasn't left me a lot of time, or energy, to write. I'm not naturally a morning person  (anyone who knows me in real life is probably shaking their head in agreement right now), but I really have been trying to get up, get in my workouts, and get to work on time. It's a daily struggle, but the good news is that I move on Friday and soon after go back to regular working hours and will return to my regular sleep schedule. I. Can't. Freaking. Wait.

In the last month since I updated, I've done a lot of really fun things! I've celebrated some birthdays, realized that I'm a hula-hooping savant, camped on Peddock's Island (one of the Boston Harbor islands -- a funny story about that to follow), and welcomed my brother (and his lovely girlfriend) to Boston for the first time since he helped to move me into my dorm freshman year. It's been a whirlwind month, and I've really tried to soak up every bit of happiness and joy. 

Back to the camping story -- the Boston Harbor islands are beautiful, and it was nice to explore a new island. Last year we were at Lovells, which was tough since it was during a heat wave and there is no fresh water there. Peddock's has water fountains near the ranger station, so even if it is a bit of a hike from the campgrounds, it's nice to travel without the bulk of several gallons of water. We left Boston on Saturday morning and spent the day hanging out at the (very rocky) beach, exploring the old military tunnels and buildings, and building a campfire. Okay, maybe I didn't have anything personally to do with the actual fire building, but I did roast plenty of marshmallows over it. 

We were on the beach during the amazing sunset, and luckily I had my fancy dancy DLSR camera in which to capture the moment. I was reminded for the millionth time how much I love, love, love sunsets. 

I woke up on Sunday morning, annoyed that I'd forgotten to set the alarm so that I could see sunrise. My love for the sunrise is equal to that of sunset, so I was really bummed. I left a sleeping j2 in the tent, and made my way to the outhouse, because, ya know, nature calls. Since we were at the group campsite, we had a lot of room in which to spread out. We all set up camp at the furthest corner of the site, which meant we were about a five minute walk to the outhouse. I went in, did my business and went to open the door and.. nothing. Huh? That's weird. Jiggled the handle and the door wouldn't budge. I quickly realized that the door was jammed, or broken, or both. I wondered how long I would be gone before anyone realized. I had left j2 sleeping, and some of our friends were awake, but even though I'd seen them on my way to the outhouse, I didn't say where I was going. For all they knew, I could have been taking a morning stroll. 

I spent the next.. what felt like hours.. banging, screaming, and hurling my entire body into the door, in an effort to get it to budge. There was no ventilation, and it was HOT in there, which only intensified my feelings of panic. I went back and forth between being totally rational -- oh, they'll realize I'm gone soon -- to batshit insane -- the rangers probably do this so that they can trap one woman a year for a ritual sacrifice on the island. Perhaps this is a sign that I've been watching too much of "The Killing". Somehow, and I have no idea how, I managed to engage the lock and the door finally swung open. Man, oh man, I don't remember the last time I was SO excited to be out in the fresh air. My recollection of that moment is that I yelled "FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST, GOD ALMIGHTY, I'M FREE AT LAST!". But, I don't think that actually happened, and I think I just sobbed silently as I walked back to the tent where I woke up j2, and then proceeded to sob uncontrollably.

Turns out that I was gone for over half an hour. 

Let that sink in -- I was stuck in an composting toilet outhouse that was baking in the summer sun -- for thirty. five. minutes. Who wants to be in an outhouse for more than 35 seconds? Now that some time has passed, I can laugh about it. Sort of. But it was definitely not the way I wanted to start my day. But j2 made me feel a whole lot better when he made me a breakfast sandwich using WAFFLES as the bread. I now know that the way to combat my PSTD is through food, preferably of the breakfast variety.

The good news is that the rangers took the lock off of the door, so that no one will get sacrificed -- I mean, stuck -- until they can do the repairs. 

Moral of the story? Poop in the woods. ALWAYS. No ifs, ands or butts. 

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