Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Stars in the Sky

There's a song in my favorite stage play, Les Miserables, entitled "Stars."

In your multitudes,
Scarce to be counted,
Filling the darkness,

With order and light
You are the sentinels,

Silent and sure
Keeping watch in the night
Keeping watch in the night

You know your place in the sky
You hold your course and your aim
And each in your season
Returns and returns
And is always the same

I was reminded of this song while I was camping this past weekend.

My Canada campground neighbors were a group of young men -- perhaps 18 or 19 years old -- who obviously had never been camping. It was very apparent when they removed the brand new tent from the box and attempted to drive the tent stakes in by stomping on it with their foot.

A man nearly old enough to be their grandfather (that would be me) offered his tent mallet.I also gave them a fire-starter block and a lighter when they were trying to get a campfire going.

My kindness was rewarded by an invitation to join them for a cool beverage around the campfire.

Campers are often like a big family enjoying a common activity together.

As we sat chatting, one of the guys mentioned that he had never seen so many stars. It turned out that only one of the group of four had ever really been out of Toronto, where they lived.  They were all very impressed with the clearness of the evening sky.

We sat quietly for a few moments and looked toward the heavens.

It was then that I realized how the stars, in their multitudes, fill the darkness with order and light. True sentinels of the night.

And I realize now how I take the simplest things, like being able to look at the stars at night, for granted.

I remember now why I like camping, in a tent, out under the stars.

More camping and other yarns at

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