One of the side benefits of camping only comes after the first week. Posh clothes, sterile desires, and obsessions with cleanliness have fallen to the relentless peace of the forest. It would be more accurate to talk about the dust one finds in every Redwood forest, the river mud that clings to skin, and the subtle threat of poison oak. Regardless of driver the fact is that everyone moves to a common sense camp readiness where there is no rich or poor, educated or city slicker, or even clean or unclean. We all stand in slightly wrinkled clothes that have been softened by the elements. It is a wonderful feeling.
I find myself wondering aloud; do we realize how many different castes we work to create? The range is enormous! Educated versus not, subtle differences thrown in based on schools, levels within, and grades (or in my case lack of!). Work titles versus profession, earnings or at least the perceived level of earnings versus those who are making ends meet, or in some cases the amount and or type of material goods. Everything makes a difference; at least we want others to think so!
Out in the Redwoods, these differences melt into simple divide; knowledge of how to survive in the wild versus those who do not. Street smarts count for nothing! High dress does not survive. Material things count for nothing. Attire aligned with what is going on protects one from the wind, keeps out the occasional rain or penetrating fog, and guards against the sun and poison oak. We all stand as family members sharing a journey.
This will not be the last time we have an opportunity to be part of great family. We have an invitation standing and waiting. God invites us to join “the Twenty-four Elders and the Four Animals [fall] to their knees and worshiped God on His Throne, praising, ‘Amen! Yes! Hallelujah!’ [Then] from the Throne came a shout, a command: ‘Praise our God, all you his servants, all you who fear him, small and great!’” (Revelation 19.4, 5)