I felt under my pillow and found a piece of paper Lily put there, with a drawing of me and her, stick-figures, camping. I picked her up at the “Y” when she got off the bus Friday and we headed east, north of Cle Elum.
We camped just off the trail at the bottom of a basin, facing down a valley. She wanted a fire but I said no, because there were rules about having one above 5,000 feet, but there was a fire ring and I decided we could have a small one anyway.
I set her up in the tent to get away from the bugs, eat some Cheez-its, read her Nancy Drew book. Something about Crocodile Island.
One of my beer cans was hissing in the bottom of my pack, with a pin-prick leak, so I got it out and shot-gunned it. I boiled water for a bag of freeze-dried beef stroganoff, and put on some music as the night fell and we sat, eating chocolate, waiting for stars, batting at the bugs, poking the fire. I put the drawing in my bag with my laptop and will store it in a file at work with others, dated June 2013.