Camp Stoves, Headlamps, Sleeping Bags, Oh my!!!
I will retire and move into our Boler Camper and explore (or build a tiny house and buy some land by a lake or a mountain... or both). I am slowly decluttering my wardrobe and house stuff in an attempt to live simply. Despite this desire and state of mind, I regularly read through my latest copy of Outside Maganize and Backpacker and lust (yes... "lust" is the correct word here) over the perfectly depicted gear with descriptions that have me daydreaming of climbing mountains while looking and feeling unstoppable. I have Pinterest boards dedicated to gear and wishlists that would serve all my camping needs. I get excited about new Kickstarters and the Gear Issues of my favourite magazines. You may find me wandering around Mountain Equipment Co-op or my local outdoors store with coffee in hand on a regular basis.
Consumerism? Maybe. But maybe its something else.
I was recently reading through the March issue of Outside and I came across a quote (within an article about living simply) that nudged me. This quote could've have sparked several emotional reactions with anger and defensiveness being the most predictable...but I felt something else - satification. The quote read, "the reason weekend warriors own so much gear is that it connects them with an activity without actually doing it all that often." Now, I do not disagree with the premise of this quote... I do, however, take issue with the inherent judgement behind it. If gear makes me feel connected to that part of myself (a part that I freaking LOVE) than I am okay with my spending money going towards that extra head lamp, camp stove, or waterproof something or other.
While I adventure as much as I can, these activities are moderated by motherhood, relationships, finances, work, and our Canadian weather. I have several trips planned (some with the kids and some without) but they are always contingent upon support from my loved ones who pick up the slack when I am gone. Buying gear, looking at gear, playing with gear in my backyard (or inside our house) and not at the base of a mountain, helps me stay connected to a part of myself and my lifestyle that needs to look slighty different right now - more homely and less wildly.
I am proud of my weekend warrior status. It respesents my balance. It models what my priorities are for my kids and includes them in the process. You may find this weekend warrior-ing adventure mama touring the camp kitchen aisles on a Wednesday but I'll see you at the trailhead come Saturday... geared up, full of stoke, and ready for adventure.