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Posts Tagged ‘WoW’

As the sun set gently over the mountain to the west, I looked out over the tranquil vista. Gathered with my family, my husband relaxing in his chair, my children playing around our campsite, our Labor Day weekend was perfect. There we were, experiencing the togetherness that camping in the great outdoors brings.

 

If only our next-door neighbor’s house wasn’t blocking the view.

 

So we don’t camp. I mean, we never have. Flash is definately a “if it doesn’t have room service and cable it’s not a vacation” kind of  guy. I camped as a kid, but you know, I’ve been happy to go with the flow for 20 years or so. But as scripture says, “See, I’m making all things new.” This is new. We are about to spend a month driving cross-country.  We’ll only have what we can take in our van, and camping is on the agenda. So, trying to be practical, I insisted that we practice.

Our view of Ken's house

The good news is, everything worked. The tent, purchased over 10 years ago on a whim and never out of the box before, was great. The air mattress stayed inflated. Of course, we did run an extension cord from the house, but the new battery powered inflater/charger thingy was working. The camp chairs–complete with umbrellas–were a hit. iPods, iPads and various electronica were all pre-charged. Geek family goes camping. It only took us an hour and a couple of verbal ripostes to get the tent itself set up. Our housemate Vivian, an experienced SCA camper, supervised and managed to not help us too much, even when we couldn’t quite get the tent stakes into the cement-hard earth. Taking pity on our bruised fingers she said, “You don’t really have to stake down the rain fly unless it rains.”

Our new camping stove was great. We got it out of the box, checked out all the necessary kitchen items I had packed carefully in the bin, and then drove to pick up McDonald’s for dinner. Who has energy to cook after all that tent stuff? But on our trip we won’t have excess funds for that much eating out, so some cooking is going to have to occur. I’ll remember to buy fuel before then. It’s on my list.

Backyard camping at it's best.

 

Ahem. Three am and the drumming of the drops woke me up. As the only adult in our family capable of functioning when suddenly awoken, I staggered around in the dark with a flashlight in my teeth and staked the rain fly, only getting somewhat drenched in the process. The good news was that the rain made the ground a lot softer… the stakes slipped right in, when I could see them to hit them.

All in all, it was a good experience. The rooster next door only started crowing about 4am, and I was too exhausted from my rain-soaked excursion to care. The boys were up with the sun, and Flash and I dozed late on our air mattress. Practice makes perfect. With that in mind, we still haven’t taken the tent down. Kinesis and Entropy have slept our there on their own two nights running. Flash and I however, are happily ensconced in our king sized bed with laptops, my 37th level worgen on WoW, and blessed blessed silence.  Our move is in less than a month now.  Maybe they’ll sleep out there every night?

I knew I’d like camping.

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If there’s one thing I’ve learned in life, it’s that sometimes you just need to hit things with swords.  Big sharp swords.  Since I’m a sedentary middle-aged woman, I do it virtually.  After my bout of movie-induced-melancholy last night, the chaos of boxes and packing and housekeeping were overwhelming me, and an email offering a free week of World of Warcraft just happened to appear in my inbox.  Darn you, Blizzard marketing department.  You’ve been spying on me.   

Smashing things feels incredibly soothing right now.  It’s like antidepressants, with sound effects and treasure.  Of course  WoW is a money pit.  After buying the program, you have to subscribe for $15 a month, which means $30 because if I subscribe, Flash will too.   I’m still on my free week, so we’ll see.  I don’t have the latest upgrades and they want to sell me those.  We have so many moving related expenses and I don’t have a regular income yet… but gaming is still way cheaper than therapy.  Not that I’m giving up therapy any time soon.

The last time I played Warcraft regularly was a couple of years ago.  At that time the boys were younger, and didn’t really notice if mom and dad locked their bedroom door at night so we could sneak in some roleplaying.   In the game.  Get your minds out of the gutter.  Now, however, launching the game attracts Kinesis and Entropy like magnets.  “What are you doing?  Why don’t you kill that?  Go climb that tower and jump off!”  The fact that they have their own games to play during quiet time, their own DSs, access to a computer with subscriptions of their own to ClubPenguin and Lego Universe, and in our living room sit an XBox, a Playstation 3 and a Wii does not distract them from hanging over my shoulder and kibbitzing about Cuteypie, my new troll character.  This has led to the development of new geek parenting phrases, such as “Go play your own MMOG! Now!”

There have been some changes in the game in the past two years.  The graphics are better, and I find the gameplay smoother.  Yet it still is a world populated by adolescent males and those who act like them.  Sometimes I just have to turn off the universal chat function.  I prefer to avoid guilds and PVP and just play solo quests, or group up just with Flash, doing lots of crafting along the way.  You know, the girly stuff.  And being in the same room on side-by-side laptops saves a lot of time on chat. 

Of course, computer gaming is a time sink.  I probably could have packed the kitchen cabinets I had my eye on today, but instead I got up and logged on for a while… and then the while grew… and grew.  I’m going to have to set some strict limits if this is going to continue.   The whole time we were watching Dr. Who (and more about that tomorrow) I was preoccupied with wondering where Flash and I would find some level 10+ quests in the Ogrimmar region.  When you can’t focus on the Tardis, you are officially hooked. 

Anyhow, that’s all for tonight.  Gotta go fight some bristleback quillboars.  You know.  Mom stuff.

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