We bought our tent last year, to go to the Greenbelt festival. Having spent the money, this summer we went proper camping – well, proper with facilities. We had a couple of days in the New Forest, then after an indoor break at my parents’ in Dorset, we went to our annual ‘Clergy Family Holiday’ at Sheldon, in Devon. The photo shows our campsite. We had the field to ourselves, which was as fantastic as having the camping toilets to ourselves – everyone else stayed indoors.
I had forgotten how camping puts you in closer touch with nature. You notice the rain (boy, do you notice the rain), you notice the sun, you can feel if it’s a cloudy or clear night by how many blankets you need. We were kept awake by owls. One morning we tried switching off a vibrating alarm, only to discover it was a nearby cow with a regular moo.
I’m probably too much of a city boy to enjoy really proper camping – collecting water from a stream, digging a latrine, cooking on a fire of scavenged wood. I do like a flush toilet. But this was fun. I hope we will keep it up.
My daughter took some lovely photos of the view from the tent, one early morning: