C is for Camping

 

C

 

I know a lot of people, probably most of you, love going camping, but I was was born without the camping gene.

I cannot for the life of me find anything attractive about camping.  I realise that this makes me a pariah in many social groups but, sorry folks, that’s the way it is.

When I was a kid my father and uncles used to go camping every so often, leaving us kids at home with the womenfolk.  My brother and my male cousins were upset at being left out of the activity and would beg to be allowed to go along.  The answer was always the same.

“When you can eat two meat pies, you can came along.”  Image

As time went by, each of the boys managed to gobble down two meat pies and was then admitted to the male camping brigade.  My brother was the youngest so when he finally succeeded in meat pie scoffing, it was a day of great celebration for my dad.  He was very pleased to be taking his son camping but, to my mind, there was absolutely no excuse for what happened next.

My dad decided that I should go along too.  I didn’t know what to think.  I had spent hours playing games when I imagined myself sleeping under the stars like the cowboys and/or Native Americans.  I had had afternoon snoozes in my cubby house but I had never actually sleep anywhere other than in a proper bed with a proper bathroom in near proximity.

The dreaded day arrived and we set off from my Aunty’s beach house where all the ladies were going to spend their weekend and headed for the Currumbin Rock Pool area which is an absolutely beautiful spot.

ImageImage

The men set up the tents and established a cooking spot while we played in the water and slid over the rocks.  So far so good. We had sausages on bread for lunch, slightly burnt but delicious nonetheless. All was well until I discovered the lack of bathroom facilities.  I believe that if you go camping in the area now, there are all the facilities you could possibly require, but way back then….uh uh!

Well, that was enough for me.  I wanted to go home…after finding a service station with a bathroom.  My request was ridiculed and denied.  I was to endure a whole night of the torture that is camping.

* No shower…swimming was expected to remove enough dirt to suffice.   Hmmm.

* Insufficient light for reading…my torch chewed its way through batteries like there was no tomorrow.

* Sleeping on the ground in a sleeping bag…unable to stretch out properly…uncomfortable.

* Mosquitoes…need I say more?

* Ants…need I say more?

* NO bathroom…no civilised person should have to dig a hole behind a tree!

* Weird noises…not just all those males snoring…really weird noises.

I just hated it.  I couldn’t wait for morning to arrive so that we could leave.  Those hours crawled by.  At last, after yet another bush bathroom visit and soggy cereal for breakfast, Dad loaded me and my sleeping bag into the car and took me back to Aunty’s beach house.  Oh, the relief.  Dad announced that I was not a camper, unloaded my gear and left to rejoin the men.

Mum understood completely.  She put bubbles in the bathtub for me and let me have a jolly good soak.  She knew I had a lot of ‘camping’ that needed to be slowly and gently dissolved.

And that, my friends, is the first and last time I have been camping.  When I signed up for online dating some years ago, I included in my profile the fact  that I would not under any circumstances go camping.  Luckily, my (now) husband loathes camping almost as much as I do.

My daughter-in-law tells me there is now something called Glamping…glamorous camping.

ImageImage

FYI…..still not interested!

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53 thoughts on “C is for Camping

  1. Thank goodness someone else thinks that way, we didn’t move out of the caves and furs to go back there. I love a bed and running water, that is what invention is for. 😉 happy alphabetting

  2. How I understand!! I could never rough it like that either – I’ve never been forced into it by anyone but even without the initial trip for experiment’s sake I can safely say that! Glamping on the other hand? Well …. your daughter in law is right: it’s much better and I really enjoy it. 🙂

  3. When my kids were growing up, this is how we camped. I packed all the food and paraphernalia (including the dogs) drove out to the campsite with them, had a great meal around the fire, kissed them good night and went home to bed. Next day, came back, played in the woods and on the beach, and, well….. you know the rest. I also got the pleasure of doing all the laundry when they came home full of sand and dirt. YEA! LOVED, LOVED your post. So glad to have met you!

    1. I have my daughter in law encouraging me to try this glamourised camping (Glamping) thing that is in fashion now.
      I really don’t think it is for me.
      Thanks for visiting, Damyanti.

  4. I don’t think I have a very strong camping gene, either. Sure, I went camping as a kid, but as an adult I just can’t bring myself to sleep in a tent. I love nature, the sky, ocean, sunset, but for a fast and easy visit. 🙂
    Great post, my first C visit of the day.
    Silvia @
    SilviaWrites

  5. I am so with you on this , and I agree with all of the point you made. You forgot one though…the bits of grass etc that get tracked into the tent. Urgh.

  6. I love camping… going to camp… and would probably enjoy the heck out of glamping, too. You made me giggle with your thoughts. It actually made me want to sleep on a platform with my sleeping bag and a bunch of other crazy friends, swapping stories late into the night.

    These are the good old days, as the Carly Simon song tells us…. Happy A to Z!

    Julie Jordan Scott
    A to Z Challenge Participant/2011,12,13,14…..
    The Bold Writer from A to Z

  7. Your post made me giggle, I have many friends that like you hate even the idea of a camping trip but I absolutely love them. It’s getting to that time again in the UK when the weather is just about bearable enough to enjoy an evening under canvas so my husband and I will soon be packing the car with the essentials for a bit of non-glamping camping in the Peak District. We have visited some very nice campsites in recent years, one even had under-floor heating in the shower rooms which I was amazed by but I fully appreciate it is not for everyone. You probably would not have appreciated my trip to the Sahara last year where digging holes was a necessity! (I wrote a post about it if you are interested in reading about the adventure) 🙂 Great post!

    1. I have seen on television that there are companies in the UK that have these structures like yurts that can be hired for camping/holiday purposes. Some property owners even rent out space in their fields for people to erect their yurts and enjoy the countryside. They actually look reasonably comfortable…compared to a sleeping bag in a pup tent.
      The Peak District is gorgeous (was there about 40 years ago…OMG!} but I do not ever see myself digging holes in Sahara. Yikes!

      1. There are many companies now that do offer ‘luxury’ camping experiences although we still prefer our own tent and roll mats. Most of Europe now have companies that provide pre-erected tents, which are pretty much cottages under canvas with beds, a fridge and cook but I almost feel that this takes the fun away from it all 🙂

  8. awww, I love camping, and so do my children. We favour the places that do not have lots of facilities – a field and a composting toilet is enough for us. We like to be feral for a few days.

    1. My daughter loves camping. I don’t know how that happened..maybe because of school camps when she was growing up. I do my camping at the Sheraton, although I am prepared to rough it at a three star hotel.

  9. We go to a campground every year, but we rent a cottage, which is actually a house they converted 🙂 We have a real bathroom and a full kitchen, which probably much cancels out the camping part, but it’s great to make smores over a fire pit and then go inside and turn on the air conditioning and watch a movie, lol.

  10. So the version of camping that I grew up with was somewhere in between. We went away in a caravan (not a mobile home/trailer) I shared the one room of the caravan with my brother and my parents – I got the top bunk. As part of the awning that attached onto the side of the caravan there were two extensions which when I was a teenager, contained an inner bit to make them into tents – I had one end and my brother had the other end. We had a chemical toilet that was in a smaller tent that would stand next to the caravan – or there would be a toilet block on the site we were staying on.

    I mastered the art of washing my hair over the washing up bowl knelt on the ground with water boiled from the kettle and left to cool a little bit.

    Since I’ve been an adult I’ve been camping in France (again sleeping on an air bed on the floor with a toilet block not too far away) and Scotland (My tent was the wrong direction on a hill so one morning I found myself wrapped in my sleeping bag sandwiched between my air bed and the wall of the tent).

    1. I bet you have some great stories from the caravan holidays too. We did a trip from Brisbane to Townsville, about 1000 miles, when I was 13. My brother slept for 90% of the holiday. We did not have an annexe so we all had to cram in the caravan to sleep. The amenities block was usually a horrible smelly concrete bunker from which someone had removed every lightbulb. Yes…definitely no camping genes in me.

  11. Totally with you! I don’t see the point of being uncomfortable, eating random food and not being able to read. Why would you do that to yourself? Glamping is even worse – you are pretending to be doing something you are not! I’ve never got that and somehow I don’t want to try and understand either.
    Cool post, though! Look forward to more during the A-Z. 🙂

  12. I am so with you on the camping front – no way José! Although, I have just returned from a short break staying in a cave in Andalusia (Spain). Of course, it had a proper bed, solar-powered electricity, a bathroom and fully fitted kitchen. Plenty of ‘yabba dabba doo’ and even WiFi too 🙂

  13. I hear ya. There are no medals for pooping in the woods, as far as I know. My son is a Boy Scout, so he and my husband get to camp monthly and they love it. I stay home and tan hides and feed chickens. It all works out. 🙂

  14. haha. love the “meat pies” rule. I liked camping as a kid, but not as an adult with all the responsibilities of camp cooking, cleaning, set up etc. And bugs. agree with you there!

    1. Thanks Gail…meat pies were almost a form of currency for us when we were young. The worth of something was rated as two pies worth or not worth a dozen pies etc.

  15. Camping in India is for boys or men folks only. For girls picnics are made to the nearest park with some snacks packed in the tiffin boxes. Till date i haven’t gone on a camp ! Ah ! what a waste. BTW glamping sounds interesting, should try this year in Goa – my hubby’s fav place.

    The Sinhas at No 302
    D for Delivery Dilemma

    1. Tiffin is a word I haven’t heard for ages. My Nanna used to say ‘Time for tiffin’ in the afternoons when she felt like a cup of tea. Thank you for reminding me of it.

  16. Your C post makes me laugh because I have told people who have asked me to go camping that if I wanted to rough it, I’d go to the Best Western or watch the sunrise from the Sunrise Inn. 🙂

  17. Ugh, I totally agree. Camping is the pits! People get so enthusiastic about it but I just do not get the attraction at all. Enjoy the rest of the A to Z challenge 🙂

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