Monday, 18 May 2015
The weather was no more promising than usual, but we went anyway. Our consession was to find a campsite in a valley rather than on the side of a hill, and as most sane people felt it wasn't a camping weekend, we were able to go to an overly-commercial site and have it to ourselves, thus managing to keep the pretense that it was just a private clearing in a moorland wood! The most important thing was that it involved a fine journey across the moors.
It almost failed within the first hour. Thea was enjoying some gentle swinging from an adult when that cry was heard, and as Ian and I ran across the field, it became clear that Thea wasn't able to grasp anything with her hand and had made her own diagnosis. While the rather rattled adult sprinted back to the reception (a good 15 minutes walk away) to enquire as to the local A&E facilities, Thea and I were brave (don't know which one was more so), and I popped her elbow back in. Good thing I pay attention to doctors
Needless to say, I DO NOT INTEND TO DO THAT AGAIN! There will be no more swinging off adults. Ever. Not until she is 18. Understood?
Then we sat and consumed most of a packet of jelly babies between us (I needed them more than her!), until she was wiggling her fingers again happily and the camping trip could resume as planned.
I think you all know the drill by now. The kids play in ponds (catching tadpoles this time), in streams, on bikes, up trees etc and are pretty much left to themselves while we make fire, chat, admire the scenery, drink coffee and whisky and eat cake and other tastiness until the next meal arises.
Many feet went into the pond unintentionally and the amazing heated bathrooms were used to dry their boots and shoes and trousers by lying them on the underfloor-heated tiles overnight. Dorothea and F went on their own adventures by themselves - the first time that they've been confident enough to go off on their own. They found rabbits and ducks and all sorts.
There was fine eating as ever. We consumed proper Korean curry, a cowboy breakfast, toasted marshmallows, pitta heaped with mushrooms and scrambled eggs, pink custard (I don't recommend it), Jacy cake, chorizo pasta and more impressive coffee that you comfortably imagine.
On Saturday we ascended Chimney Bank in the howling wind to eat lunch in a hollow and explore.
And then there was visiting the park and more fire and more eating and more chatting and singing.
It doesn't sound that exciting, but it was lovely. It was on the chilly side (I had at least four layers on at all times), but we were never properly cold. Of course those with stoves in their teepee don't need to sleep entirely in their tent. They might need a breath of fresh air.....
Everyone was happy.