So you have agreed to go camping. You have done it before, and it was a near catastrophic event, but like child birth, you forget just how painful it can be and decide optimistically to do it again. The morning you are due to you leave you look for your tent, and cannot find it anywhere. Eventually it turns up in a corner of the garage, loose and mouldy. You couldn’t get it back in the bag last time you camped, meant to have another go at home, but as soon as you got in the door you forgot the tent even existed. You still can’t get it into its bag, but manage to cram it into a giant carrier from Ikea. That will do. Repeat the above for sleeping bags, and mattresses. In fact have to resort to buying new, cheap mattress, because the all singing, all dancing, inflates itself one you spent a fortune on last year has vanished. Set off for campsite, late, and grumpy.
Arrive at campsite, try to erect (sniggers) tent to discover you do not have tent pegs. Attempt to use forks. It does not work, so you have to wait until dark, then sneak around the campsite surreptitiously stealing one from each tent until you have enough.
Discover that inflating 2 double air beds with a foot powered air pump is the equivalent of a marathon. A marathon you are not fit enough for, so you resort to sleeping on limp under inflated beds. Frankly a sheet would have provided as much comfort.
When it comes to sleeping, you will need to wear all your clothes at once. It is quite surprising how cold it is at night, and that summer duvet you grabbed off your bed as you ran out the door is simply not man enough for the job. Also pack ear plugs. Not for the noise of other campers, but so you can’t hear your other half complaining about how much he hates camping all night. In fact, keep them in all day too. Enjoy the peace.
Awaken to the delicious small of bacon frying in next doors camping kitchen. You may have been vegetarian for almost 30 years, but it is a smell designed to make you hungry. They are also making fresh coffee. You have none of these things. You don’t even have the cereal bars, fruit, and juice cartons of the mid-level organised campers to the other side of you. But don’t worry. Flat warm coke, and soggy digestive biscuits are both nutritional and tasty. The resulting sugar rush will see you all through the morning.
Now what? Well if you are lucky, you are at a festival, so you can leave your bleak canvas surroundings behind and go frolic in the sun mud with a shandy and some live music. If you are unlucky enough to need to make your own entertainment you can watch while your kids try to steal the balls/frisbees/travel games of the organised people around you. Some entertainment can be gleaned by watching the teen trying to find high ground in the hope of a mobile phone signal.
Then at the end of it all, you can pack up. There is NO WAY that that tent came out of that bag. You try ever more outlandish canvas origami, but to no avail, it will not fit, so you sling it loose in the boot, with the promise to dry it and pack it properly at home. Which is where we came in.
This pretty much describes my camping. I have to do it at Camp Bestival next weekend. Help me. For tips on how to be much more organised and fabulous see this awesome post from the Alexander Residence, I know where to head next weekend if I have forgotten anything everything!
Love Miss not terribly good under canvas Cisco XXX