Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A Letter to Happy Camper Camp Chair Company

Dear Happy Camper Camp Chair Company,

I wanted to write you this letter to express my thanks for your Happy Camper Camp Chairs. My family purchased four of these delightful chairs. Thank you for making such an affordable, portable chair. Kudos to your marketing department for placing them in front of our favorite grocery store, next to the bottled water. Between that and the $8.99 sticker price, they were practically irresistible. The little draw string pouch they came in was charming, even after we lost all the cord clamps to them and one of them sprouted a cute little hole so you can see what's inside.

The thing I like the best about your chairs is the entertaining ways they break. For instance, once my daughter had a plate full of food at a picnic and went to sit down on one of your Happy Camper chairs. When all her weight rested on the seat it gave way and up went the plate of food. It landed like chunky rain on a few other picnickers. My daughter said, "Oh!" It was quite entertaining.

And then there was my son's experience. He had finished his food and had gone back for a second cup of water. He sat down on the seat and this time both of the rivets gave way and his rump fell right through to the ground, his knees up by his eyeballs and his hands in the air, still clutching his cup of water. He was quite stuck and looked like some kind of weird spider trying to untangle himself from the legs of the skeleton, which was all that was left of what had been a Happy Camper Chair. I have paid more and been less entertained at a comedy show, so I just want to say "thanks."

Karen Dupaix

Monday, August 9, 2010

Back To My Roots

We recently returned from a vacation to the beautiful Northwest coast. I was able to take my children to Portland, where I showed them my home, the elementary school, and the high school I attended, where I first fell in love with literature and decided I wanted to be a writer.

I loved the green trees in our campground, thick and fuzzy with moss, the light filtering down through needles and leaves. The air seemed rich with oxygen and smelled green--can you smell green? If so, it would smell like Oregon.

We built a big family sandcastle at the beach and did a lot of beach combing. I wiggled my feet down into the soft, fine-grained sand, as if I could root myself to the beach and stay there forever.

The water was too cold to swim in so the children gathered treasures of broken shells and limpets. They watched small crabs skuttle for shelter when dislodged from their homes under large rocks.

Something about being back where I grew up made me feel whole, filled, at home. It was as if the trees and moss were welcoming me back. I think a part of me will always be there, in the coastal forest, breathing in the rich air, so different from the dry mountain desert I have lived in for the past 23 years.