We arrived about an hour before the rain did, with just enough time to put up the tents. The truth is, I like camping in the rain. As long as it's dry when I put up my tent and where I eat, that is. The latter can be (and has been) a tarp over the cooking and eating area. The part I like best is hearing the rain on the roof of the tent. Needless to say, I have a nice, waterproof tent.
We went up to the cave pretty late, but as someone pointed out, it's always night in the cave. We went in with hard hats, bike helmets, and in my case, a snowboarding helmet, and head lamps. I was glad that I was wearing old clothes because we got filthy dirty (running jokes: "Oooh, it's a bit slippery over here" and "You've got a bit of dirt on you."). The worst part was the metal tunnel and ladder to get in and out (see picture to the right). It was fun, but I wouldn't take up caving or spelunking as a hobby. It's got the same entertainment value as hiking or climbing, but it's dark, wet, and if you were to get lost, it's considerably scarier (see earlier reference to having a good guide). Not that we did get lost, but my storyteller side leapt out every once in a while and say "what if!"
Then this weekend, I went on a hike with my brother and his new honey. She is very nice. I look forward to getting to know her better. She seems to be just the sort that would suit my brother well. We went by another cave entrance and went down it a short ways. Turns out it was impossible to get lost in, thank goodness. There was also a lovely little stream and a beautiful view of the valley.
We stopped by a winery on the way back and did a little wine tasting. It was fun and I ended up buying a few bottles.
And, though this has nothing to do with caves or camping, I'd like to report that I've read and enjoyed the latest Harry Potter and am now reading a peculiar mystery, called Three Bags Full, in which a flock of sheep investigates the murder of thier shepard. I just noticed this morning that the little drawings of sheep in the lower right corner would jump and frolic when flipped through, like one of those moving picture books. In just one of the frames, the sheep looks like it had quite a fright, but I haven't got to the story at that page, so I'll have to wait and see what's on that page.