I was recently talking to a friend about the joys of camping. We both agreed that childhood camping trips held some wonderful memories, but we were stunned to realise that neither of us had been on such a break in many years.
It appeared that time had simply passed and other priorities had emerged. I suspect that we’re not alone in having been diverted by other requirements. It may have been work, or other social engagements that meant that we were always too busy to find time to head off on a camping weekend. There was obviously always something that meant that things didn’t get organised in a way that really made enough time available for this form of entertainment.
In truth, it may have been that our families grew and that other family members weren’t so enthusiastic about the thought of camping. Once again, I suspect that we’re not alone in being faced by a lack of interest in the whole idea.
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Getting back into the swing of things
As a result of that conversation, it was pretty clear what needed to be done: we needed to plan a camping trip! We didn’t waste any time; we decided that we should head off as soon as we possibly could.
There was a little trepidation on my part. The problem with looking back on experiences with such fond memories is that there’s always that slight fear of disappointment. What would I feel if things simply weren’t as good this time around?
We decided to head for a campsite that was familiar to neither of us. For my part, I felt that this was something that certainly reminded me of previous trips. Part of the excitement was all about discovering new places of interest. Although the safe option might have been to return to a previous haunt, the truth was that would have felt a little boring.
We opted for a rural site. To me, such campsites embody all that’s good about the experience. Why would you want to opt for somewhere close to home? By heading further afield, you can enjoy so many more opportunities.
New memories are created
So how did things go? Was the camping experience as good as I had remembered it being?
I’m pleased to say that I certainly wasn’t disappointed. Some things were even better than I had remembered them being. When I was sitting outside the tent before going to bed, I looked up at the sky and realised that I could see so many more stars than would have been possible at home.
When you’re in the countryside, you realise that you can avoid the light pollution that blights our towns and cities.
In the morning, I re-discovered the great pleasure that’s associated with cooking on a basic camping stove. These are simple pleasures, but they help to make the outdoor experience so memorable.
I can’t believe that I waited so long between camping trips. That’s not a mistake that I’ll be making again.
We all lead busy lives, but we sometimes need to remember the things that really matter. That means making time to unwind, to have fun and to spend time with the people who are most important to us.
Keith Barrett believes that budget vacations can be fun! With the right camping supplies, he knows that even the most basic vacation, or weekend break, can become something truly memorable.
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