Posted on Dec 19th, 2009 in Bushwalk
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This is the second part of ’5 lessons I’ve learned from my first camping trip’. Click here to read from the beginning.
Photo from Torpedo7.com.au
Our tent was erected quickly, along with the foldable table and chairs. Richard made us tea from the hot water in our shiny new Thermos flask. We sunk into our chairs, listening to the birds chattering away as they returned to roost.
This peaceful moment did not last long. A loud, heated argument had erupted from The Tent – the one we avoided like the plague! The angry man started pulling The Tent down as one of the girls flung herself on him, begging desperately for him to stop.
“I’ve had enough! We’re leaving right now!” he bellowed. The woman chased the girls away from him and they cried hysterically behind some trees. The argument grew in intensity and there was nothing anyone could or woud do but watch, completely gobsmacked, like a herd of deer in headlights.
The bedlam finally ended when the man suddenly stormed off with one of the girls in tow. And then there was silence. The woman and the other two girls retreated into The Tent for several hours, probably asleep or in shock.
As we cooked over our little camp stove, we theorised about this extraordinary turn of events. The main question was what was the story behind this family. It made for an interesting dinner conversation but I could not help but feel for those poor, traumatised children. There is no doubt in my mind that they would be scarred.
4. Summer ≠ warm nights
We had our fleece jackets and long pants on over dinner. The temperature had dropped quickly and the wind was chilly. Some of the other campers were not as prepared and they had to take shelter in their tents (and car!) to get away from the elements. The sun had not even gone down yet.
I’m so glad we used this camping checklist
when packing. It paid off being prepared with the right equipment. We sat outside chatting and playing chess until bed time, which brings me to the last lesson.
5. Air beds in a small tent is not a good idea
As it was our first camping trip, we did not want to spend a lot of money on equipment in case we hated it. So we brought along a couple of air mattresses we owned, instead of buying sleeping bags. We had a doona to share and pillows too. We thought we’ll sleep pretty well…
Until we placed the inflated air matresses inside our small tent. The air matresses took up the entire tent floor! It was like stepping in and out of a cramped jumping castle!
And if that wasn’t bad enough, both the matresses had a slow leak and we gradually deflated through the night! LOL…
On the up side, we slept better than those in The Tent as another explosive argument ensued when the man returned near midnight. It was weird and scary at the same time as the man started bawling like a two year old!
“No, no, no, no! I don’t want to go!” he pleaded endlessly.
We remained shut up in our tent, only peeking out when it was all quiet again. Thankfully that was the last we heard of them until we left bright and early in the morning.
Do you think I will go camping again?