Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Bad Camping Trip

As I mentioned in my last post, a few things went wrong on my recent camping trip. The first thing that went wrong was that we didn't really get to go camping out in the wilderness. We had planned to use an area out in the great outdoors, many miles from anywhere. When we arrived there, however, there was a great big sign posted on a newly built gate. It informed us that the lands had been bought up for private use and that camping on them were now strictly prohibited.

It was so last-minute when we discovered this that we decided to just camp in my friend's backyard (she has a half acre garden so we camped at the end of it and pretended we were out in nature) rather than wandering aimlessly through the countryside in search of a non-purchased area of land to camp on.
We began to settle in and pitch the tents and everyone's mood was picking up again. Then it took about two hours to light the camping grill we had brought with us. We were determined to eat outdoors by our own means at the very least because we were still pretending to be in the wilderness. This meant we banned ourselves from using the grill inside my friend's house. We were starving and all the grill would do was produce insane amounts of smoke.

Just when we were about to give in to the fact that we had failed yet again, the grill miraculously began burning correctly and we hurriedly made ourselves some food. Once again our moods lifted and we broke into our supplies of junk food. Later in the night, we settled down to sleep.
I didn't sleep very well the first night. Ireland isn't an extremely cold country, it is mild at most, but for some reason my tent seemed to really enjoy working part-time as a freezer. From half one in the morning until about 9am I looked like a giant bag of ice inside my sleeping bag. My teeth were chattering and I felt utterly miserable.

At around nine the next morning I woke up struggling to breathe. My tent had finished it's nighttime shift as a freezer and had begun it's daytime shift as an oven. I swear I could actually smell my hair burning it was that hot. I had woken up because my black leather jacket (which was basically cooking) had brushed against one of my toes and burnt me. I felt so lightheaded that I started hallucinating. The inside of the tent wavered like a mirage. I saw beautiful colours in the roof of the tent and had an out of body experience.

Then I fought my way out of tent, collapsed in the lovely, normal-temperature grass and took a huge gulp of water. This was a huge relief to my system and I was so pleased that it took me a few hours to realize that the rapid change in temperature during the night had caused my mild cough to become a rather painful chest infection. I spent the second night of the two-night trip wrapped up in all the clothes I owned, sipping 'Lemsip' and wheezing pathetically.
The day I got home I showered for what felt like a year (a very well spent year), ate a salad (which felt like ambrosia after all the junk-food) and got into my very own bed. In a previous post, I said changing my bed-sheets was like trying to fight with a giant marshmallow. Well, when I got into bed after that camping trip, it felt like that same marshmallow had resolved his differences with me and was cuddling me gently to sleep. I don't think I will ever leave the comforts of my home again.

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