Monday, 13 April 2009
What I did in the Easter holidays.........
So, we have arrived home, a tad wind-burnt and tired but content, following our first camping trip of the year. The campervan has been unpacked, small dog is dedicatedly catching up on her missed naps, and I've finished wading through the 500+ emails which flooded into my inbox.
It was a calm and restful weekend, during which I did little else but relax and enjoy the company of friends. Aside from a few light showers, the weather was pleasant with sufficient warm, sunny spells to ensure that we spent 95% of each day in the great outdoors.
Days were spent reading, chatting, strolling round the lake, watching the antics of fellow campers erecting tents and awnings etc. PP spent many happy hours foraging for wood and twigs for our evenings round the fire pit, while Small Dog fully implemented her 24 hour DuckWatch programme, springing into action if any feathered foe so much as put a webbed foot within the boundaries of our pitch.
Evenings were set aside for cosy communal meals, with good food, free-flowing wine, much laughter and general bonhomie.
On our final evening we decided to jettison any pretence of nouvelle cuisine and opted to replicate a full scale 'comfort food' BBQ. All four dogs gave this idea a firm 'paws up' presumably at the prospect of a two-thirds of a cooked sausage each. This largesse on our part provided the first stumbling block of the evening as we then had to work out how to divide 16 3/8 sausages by 6.
Division of fractions isn't my strong suit at the best of times, and after a few glasses of wine my admittedly 'hit and miss' arithmetical skills certainly don't improve any. All six of us struggled for a while trying to work it out in our heads, inevitably arrived at wildly differing answers and then sneered at each other in a good-natured way for being such computational doofuses.
In terms of cooking equipment, J+B had brought along their swanky new fire pit, but PP and I let the side down with a cheap disposable BBQ which took 2 hours of blowing and poking to reach the right heat. It then maintained this optimum cooking temperature for 10 minutes before promptly going out.
PP, who is a card-carrying pyromaniac and BBQ diva par excellence, staunchly maintained that our credit crunch BBQ would be just perfect for cooking 'in about 10 minutes'...... a stance that she steadfastly held for the ensuing 2 hours in the face of all evidence to the contrary.
Note our state-of-the-art BBQ balanced on bricks, accessorised with impromptu table of upturned fire bucket. PP is competently multitasking, glass in hand......
The shamefaced admission that our BBQ was one of 'two for a pound at Lidl' drew jeers of derision from our campmates who were understandably peckish and looking forward to their Taste the Difference sausages. Hopefully sometime this millennium.
Meanwhile, the fire pit was going great guns. So much so that we even chanced our luck to add a cauldron of beans.
Eventually dinner was served, and afterwards we all gathered round the glowing embers of the fire pit, telling tall tales of derring-do, while dusk darkened to night. Fortunately, as the temperature plummeted, we were bolstered by sufficient alcohol to keep the cold at bay, along with assorted unusual items of headgear, which perhaps, in retrospect, did little to enhance our sartorial standing.
However, we were determined to preserve and uphold the quiet dignity of our animals.
So, all things considered, a jolly good time was had by all and the trip marked a great start to the camping season.
When's the next one then.................?