B texted me these pictures Friday night.
Our church tends to do a Father/Son Campout each year and it is usually around May to commemorate the restoration of the Priesthood. This was tricky in China. Last year, I think the boys were just invited over to the apartment of our Branch President and they had a BBQ in his apartment’s courtyard with hot dogs and such. This year, our district (3 English speaking congregations of our church) decided to camp together. The location was out near the Ming Tombs in far far northern Beijing.
There were a lot of crazy logistics to work out. B had to work Friday until 4 ish, then get to the right train station with all four boys and their overnight stuff at the right time to meet someone from church who was going to pick them up and drive them to the camp site and loan them a tent and sleeping bags. That all took forever. Meanwhile, we also had to work out our Saturday logistics. A sweet friend from church was going to teach some of us how to make Chinese food. So Saturday morning, Princess Sparkley and I had to be on the eastern side of Beijing, an hour from home. And to make things more difficult, Saturday was also when B had his HSK level 1 test, the first in a series of Chinese government-recognized Chinese language tests. And I think his phone battery was dead, making it difficult for us to coordinate.
PS and I went and cooked and left as soon as we could, traveling to a north/central part of Beijing to meet the boys at the university where B’s test was taking place. But we hadn’t quite worked out how/when/where the meeting would happen. And then phones weren’t working. B ended up getting to the school and leaving the boys with their luggage near the front courtyard area while he went to take his test. He’d left them with some money and when PS and I showed up about 15 minutes later, luckily showing up at the same gate to the university, they had just returned from buying water outside the gate from a street vendor. We waited together for B to finish and then all headed home together. I should mention that Squidgems was sick. He’d seemed okay, maybe not perfect when he left for the campout the afternoon before, but he was feverish and drowsy when I met up with him the next day.
B took these beautiful pictures at the camp.