When camping goes wrong!
I recently wrote about our decision to go camping. I told you how I needed to put aside my anxieties over things that are actually expected of when camping. We love camping, being amongst nature, getting back to basics and serving up an adventure for our kids. You see I’ve been on many camping trips and also camped with our daughter from when she was about 2 but this time in addition we were going with our 18 month old too!
Just to put you in the picture, my OH was feeling pretty poorly. I’m not the most sympathetic when it comes to ‘man flu’ but the fact that he was sweating in the night where we were cold says it all. I did say to him that we could postpone the camping trip but he wanted to persevere, he didn’t want to let our excited little girl down.
Off we went, straight after school. We reached our destination around 5. Teatime! So the question was do we pitch the tent first or get tea first? We decided to pitch up first then head into town for tea. So far so good. A good old Soreen loaf saw them through. My OH wanted to eat in I wanted to take out. I figured a take out back at the tent would be more straightforward and quicker but the OH wanted to eat in (given his physical state I agreed). We found a pub and got seated after waiting 10 minutes.
We had our orders taken and we asked for some garlic bread while we waited but to bring out the mains asap. We waited, waited for about 30 minutes and still no garlic bread. Instead we had a toddler who was screaming and not wanting to sit in his chair. I go and chase up the order, 2 minutes later the garlic bread arrives. By which point Pud has had enough, and so had we. With a sorry looking uneaten garlic bread we knew we were losing. We decided to leave and go for take out. The chip shop which I had spotted earlier was now closed. [Had he not been ill, a serious ‘I told you so’ was on the cards]
We eventually found a pizzeria and took food back to the tent. Finally, we could relax. The evening drew in and the kids were asleep by about 10pm – it’s always late when camping and that we don’t mind. We went to bed but the campers next to us decided it was party time till 4am! I get that adults will want to stay up chatting and drinking but 4am and on a family campsite? When Pud decided to wake at about 7am I almost wanted him to cause a scene and disturb next door.
So not the start to our weekend we hoped. However the next day we were off to the LIME festival in Llangollen. Despite the lack of sleep we had a lovely day, the sun was shining, the kids were in good moods and we were happy. The entertainment was so varied with loads for kids to do. A very eclectic mix of music could be heard throughout the festival. The food was delicious, so much choice made it hard to choose. When we returned to the tent it was late afternoon and time to relax (well as much as you can do with a toddler who wants to climb fences, explore and dig in the mud).
Pops rode her bike around the campsite, a first in me backing off a little. I really don’t like not being able to see her in a situation were she’s without adult supervision. She wanted to ride her bike around a loop in the campsite, a small part of which is out of sight. Do we restrict her movements and have a grumpy child to deal with or do we give her a bit more freedom and trust that she’s listened to us when we’ve said ‘no strangers’, ‘don’t go anywhere else’ and ‘straight back here’. We decided we should trust her and thankfully all was well, she rode around in little loops, checking back in with us regularly and reporting on what the other kids were doing.
Pud figured out in seconds how to get out the tent. So we spent a good proportion of the time preventing the great escape. The little monkey was so sneaky though and managed a few time to half escape, head and arms emerged outside the tent through a small opening where he’d managed to open the zip, legs waving around inside in a desperate attempt to get out.
The campsite was beautiful, the bacon butties in the morning were the best and seeing the kids exploring nature was great. Was it relaxing? Maybe not so much this time but I know as they get older camping will be more enjoyable. The longest we got to relax was about 30 minutes whilst the two of them gathered stones from the road and placed them in Puds dumper truck. What is it about stones?
It may not have started off the most enjoyable of camping trips but we’re not put off, we’ll go again. Back to that campsite too. On the edge of Bala lake it’s perfect for water sports as a family. A lovely little site. I still maintain camping is an experience all children should have.
Have you had any camping trips that have gone wrong?