I am a woman who likes a hot bath, a comfortable bed, and a flushing loo. I am also someone who is prone to feeling cold in June and I am not the best sleeper, even in the comfort of my own six foot wide bed. Not the ideal candidate for camping then.
“You’ll hate it,” my husband repeated over and over again, as I suggested a camping trip a few times last year. Secretly I thought he was right, although I protested thinking that the children would have deprived childhoods if we didn’t let them sleep under the stars. But last November my friend Sophie announced that she was having a camping party for the August Bank Holiday Weekend, and because she always does things brilliantly, I said we would go. And then I promptly tried not to think about it or do anything about buying a tent, or a blow up mattress or a pump or a torch or all the other things I later discovered are needed for a camping holiday.
Then two parents from my sons class asked us to join them for a June camping weekend and because we were new parents at the school, and keen for Jude to bond with his friends, I rashly accepted. The time drew nearer and suddenly we realized we had nothing to camp with. We borrowed two small tents and a gas cooker and taking the advice of friends, we packed our car with duvets, pillows, blankets and sausages. I also telephoned my doctor and asked for sleeping pills. Packing for two nights took five hours!
Things I liked about my first camping trip: Eating a ton of bread and sausages and not caring.
Drinking quite a few glasses of wine.
Getting to know my camping friends: The lovely Jane and the gorgeous Emily.
Waking to the sound of bird song.
Children out all day from 7am
Grownups out all day from 8am
Swimming in the river
The cream tea café on the camp site.
The camping glow
Watching the Stars.
Things I don’t like:
Blow up mattresses
Taking sleeping pills
Queuing up for a shower
Washing up without gloves or a dishwasher.
Putting down and putting up the tent.
Not being able to find anything when it gets dark
Piling up the car with almost all the contents of a house.
Feeling exhausted for two days after getting home.
Having to walk across a field to pee at night.
But it can’t be that bad. We have since been camping to Glastonbury, Dorset and just back from Yorkshire for the bank holiday camping party which was the best four days ever.
My tip: Rose hip moisturizing oil is perfect for rough skin that’s been out in all weathers and the oil is extracted from rose that grows in the Andes Mountains. It’s in a roll on bottle so won’t spill if you are travelling. I used it on my cracked heels and on my dry legs, although you can use it on your hair and face. I wish Aubrey Organics would make it in a bigger bottle!