There were three adventures this month, one of which didn’t happen and two of which I fear you’re going to think are really pathetic, not much of an adventure at all. But both felt like adventures to me, and that’s what counts.
The one that didn’t happen:
The plan was that we would travel to Lerwick in Shetland to visit a friend who is working there for six months. We were very excited at the prospect, it’s somewhere I’ve long wanted to go, and fitted well with my shawl knitting – I had specially chosen the yarn because it is undyed pure wool grown and spun in Shetland.
However, it turned out that our geography on how far away Lerwick is was somewhat hazy. We hadn’t realised just how far it is (closer to Bergen in Norway than to Aberdeen), and therefore just how expensive it would be to get there and back. The only practical way would be to fly, something I was reluctant to do and when it turned out to be not far short of £1000 (yes really!) for both of us to get there and back, we decided this was just not for us. Maybe another time when we’ve more time available for slower travel, and can possibly find a cheaper way to travel, and stop over a few places along the way. But not now.
The other plan on our list was to have a night away camping, to try out our new (Christmas present) tent – part of our longer-term plan to spontaneously holiday away. Our answer to the dream but crazy-expensive and diesel-guzzling camper van. So, early in the month, with the weather set fair, we booked ourselves into a delightful small quiet campsite in Somerset for an overnight adventure. Which was perfectly wonderful – we had the field to ourselves (just one other couple camping there, in an adjacent field); the views were stunning, the sky clear and bright, and we had a delicious evening meal cooked on our little stove. Our only other neighbours were the alpacas in the next field.
What wasn’t so perfectly wonderful was that those clear blue skies meant that the temperature plummeted as night fell. We snuggled into our sleeping bags, with thin air mattresses to protect us from the worst of the cold, and both slept very fitfully. Even with my continuing hot flushes, I was cold. Sadly, his air mattress had a secret slow puncture, and as the night went on, the mattress went down and he got colder and colder.
Still, rising early to more clear blue skies, birdsong, hot tea and a cooked breakfast, all was good, and we congratulated ourselves on having planned just the one night away. Honour was not lost by heading off back home.
This was my first camping experience since our sons have grown up. When they were babies and children our holidays were regularly camping holidays. Until the time came when I realised that sharing even a large family tent with two large teenage boys wasn’t my idea of a relaxing annual break, and I drew a line under it.
Now we’ve both got the bug again, and we intend to take off spontaneously when the weather is good and we feel like it. We know now what equipment we need for comfort, and what to leave behind. It’s all ready to go, when the fancy grabs us. Probably not till next year though, because we already have so many other things planned for this year.
Even less of an adventure by most people’s standards, this one. I stayed at home. A lot. Sometimes alone. I enjoyed being here: gardening, cooking, doing yoga, crocheting, knitting, walking. Simply being. I loved it. It was a luxury and a novelty to have ‘holiday’ time at home, with no responsibilities and every choice.
So – not much of an adventure by many people’s standards, but both whetted my appetite for more of the same.