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About Me:18-year-old sixth form student, studying English Literature, History and Government and Politics. My articles will broadly cover topics from the current affairs of politics to reviews of books and albums, as well as adding my own creative pieces, whether it be short fiction or general opinion.
“That’s the toilet…?” my wife said, staring down into a shallow pit of mud and grass. Somewhat perplexed by her perplexity, my one-year-old son, donned gaily and triumphantly in his nappy, giggled.
We were staying in Greenfields, a Centre Parks-esque campsite, which placed precedence on comfort and enjoyment on camping rather than the nitty-gritty sleeping-in-a-cold-sleeping-bag part of it. Yes, we were camping, but not in a tent on the ground. Instead we were raised twenty feet above in a luxurious glammed-up tree house. Fit with a fridge, microwave, TV and sofa, the tree house served us with all the usual amenities (except, of course, the toilet that required you to climb down your ladder and find your allocated ‘hole’).
We had not come for the pleasures that surely awaited us at home, though. We had come for a family vacation – a means of escaping the hullabaloo of city life, and thus we had chosen the adamite option. After all, how best to escape petrol fumes, incessant vrooms of engines and suffocating inundation of vacuous tweets about sandwiches than basking in nature’s arms? My wife and I had decided that wearing nothing but leaves was perhaps the wrong route to go down, though, and so we compromised into settling for glamping.
We came for what was shown to us when we looked outside our viewing balcony. Overlooking a vast expanse of green ablaze with autumnal colour, we just sat in our decking chairs with only nature’s lullaby for miles around. It was as in a film, my wife kept informing me – a view that a painter only dreams of coming across (and for a price of £125 a night these dreams can materialise) (the best things in life are…bought?).
But a view holds no value as just a view. And, when aclimatised to such beauty, one begins to feel restless, a kind of fidgety agitation at the fact that such things bleed into normality. And so, induced with a new passion for exploration, my wife, my son (though he didn’t have much say in the matter) and I embarked on a walk through the dense forest we had been admiring for a week.
It was a muddy affair, to say the least. My wife had somehow thought that the very term ‘glamping’ suggested a metamorphosis of nature’s physics – that rain on mud would cease to equate to that which makes your wellies squelch, your strides evermore laborious and your words unfit for the tender ears of a child. Alas we continued on our adventure, albeit in a slow and trudging fashion. It wasn’t all bad, though. To see my son’s eyes alight with childlike curiosity when a flock of parakeets arced over our heads, or when he noticed a caterpillar concertina in and out on the bark of a tree, or at the strange crimson that had suffused across his mother’s face when she, for the tenth time, got her welly stuck in the mud, was a worthwhile consolation.
It would be wrong to see this as a fault of Greenfields; every camping sight is subject to the capriciousness of the British weather. Indeed, the next day when the sun decided to make an opportune appearance, Greenfields showed its true worth. We were able to go for a bike ride across the now-dry ground, and eventually ended up on top of a huge hill. The sun, now at the angle of sunset, invested Greenfields with that near-twilight allure, to which we laid out our blanket (provided, generously, by Greenfields) and sat down to have a picnic, a calm breeze lapping against our faces. We must have stayed there for around five hours, just sitting and letting time lilt and lapse. Such was the tranquility of the scene that we all dozed off, rousing only at the new cold that night had brought with it.
The narcotic quality of that evening pervaded the following days; the rain ceased to fall on the rest of Greenfields, but even if it had it wouldn’t have made much difference; we were now at peace, snuggled up in our cabin.
Like most Brits, we hadn’t realised the extent of our own enjoyment until we were bitterly reminded of it. On the journey home, travelling in some big ol’ Jeep thing, the radio spasmodically switched on blaring out its snarls of bass-heavy techno tunes, political spats and talks of how there had been yet another hate crime somewhere or other. My son let out a convulsion of screams and tears, and wife looked as if she were about to imitate him. Greenfields had provided a sanctuary from the venomous reality of the world, and now, desperate for a plaster over the Brexit wound, we will surely be returning.
Image Credis: goclamping.com