I made the mistake of listening to Woman’s hour yesterday morning – I should have known better really – it is just such a load of old nonsense. The topic under discussion was whether camping could be romantic – and quite honestly I was banging head against the desk with frustration at the silly woman they featured – according to her camping can be a recipe for cystitis, while watching someone “hunched over like a prawn, dousing themselves with a wet wipe” Her patronising tone claiming that whilst it can be charming and pastoral, it can also get you too close to someone else’s undercarriage, was in my humble opinion simply ridiculous! She appears to be a fan of camping in general and so I was surprised by her damning indictment of the perils of life under canvas.
Am I a fan of camping – too right I am! Do I think it’s romantic – absolutely it can be!
I grew up on camping holidays – under canvas, in an old rickety Commer Camper van, in the rain, in the sunshine over seas, breaking down half way up a mountain, leaky tents & plastic cutlery – the works! And I bloody loved it!
As an adult, with the lovely Badger, we have camped all over the country. Sometimes in flashy modern tents with ventilation and air bed, sometimes under 18th style linen open fronted hovels with nothing more than hay underneath me and a reindeer skin over the top – and you know what? it has been some of the most romantic times we ever spent!
You see romance doesn’t care if you have money, a four poster bed and a jacuzzi, it cares about who you are with and how you communicate with each other.
Romance is about people not money. Romance is about people not how much you can spend or how much you are worth.
Camping strips away the vagaries of our lives and makes you honest. If you can’t make it work on an air-bed, you probably can’t make it work in normal life either.
There is no “playing house” or “pretending to be pioneers” (although yes we have done historical re-recreation style camping) there is just you, warts and all, sharing a tent with the warty person you chose to holiday with. No hiding behind a façade of make up, straightened hair and ironed clothes, just you and you know what?
That honesty is what is romantic, conversations without trying to impress, your morning face without the good lighting of an expensive hotel and dinner by torchlight (or candles as long as you are careful of the safety warnings on your tent)
So yes camping is romantic, rain, snow, hail, strong winds and noisy neighbours included (and trust me we’ve camped in all those)- just brush it off, laugh at it all and love the person struggling into their sleeping bag beside you!
Maybe more relationships would work better if we stripped away those “niceties” we live with and showed our loved one the honest side of us.
And yes it has brought me into close contact with someone else’s undercarriage – but only because he split the crutch of his trousers and I had to sew them up…. long story….. don’t ask and we were married so I guess it’s ok!
Photo courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/stevejb68/