Tuesday, 31 July 2012

The trouble with tenting

One of the major problems with going camping is that the aural landscape which often accompanies the experience, rather than being the soft sighing of wind, or the relaxing tweeting of birds, is the ear-splitting din of tantrum after tantrum from small children. Sometimes it's like dominoes. One goes off, somewhere in the middle distance, and then there's a veritable dawn chorus of grizzling. I say dawn chorus because the experience invariably begins at sun up!  

The flip side of the early starts is that, by ten o'clock in the evening, the camp sites become deathly silent, and eerily dark. We walked Uncle Bill back to her cottage last night (her clan aren't camping this year) and returned home via a series of pitch black lanes as high winds turned the trees above us into creaking, moaning, chattery old women. The only light came from the silvery moon, and a mystical orange glow just above the horizon in the West, which I assume was the sun setting somewhere in the mid Atlantic.

It rained in the night. I kept waking up to hear spattering on the roof of our tent, but we were gloriously warm and dry inside Meriel's tent.

The weather improved and improved throughout the day, and once again, we found ourselves crossing over the estuary on the King Harry ferry in order to reach the Glendurgan Gardens, a National Trust-owned, 25-acre, semi-tropical pleasure garden, which rolls down a valley towards a tiny beach.

It was a brilliant place. The kids were in their element. There was a maze, a bamboo wood, trees to climb, streams to splash about in and a brilliant spinning rope. Every winding path brought a new adventure. It's well worth a visit.

Much to our great disappointment we're now wending our way back to London, over Bodmin Moor and now into Devon. In 5 hours, we'll be home and the dream will be over. 

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