independent

Saturday 23 August 2014

I definitely think I'm over the camping thing...

Published 02/07/2013 | 05:42

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FOR months now I've been extolling the virtues of camping to anyone who'd listen. 'Oh you should try camping, it's fab!'

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'What you mean you haven't been camping? Oh it's the BEST holiday ever!'

Two weeks in the South of France last year have apparently qualified me as an expert in all things camping! My father however thinks I'm cheating. 'It isn't camping unless you're under canvas,' he pointed out.

Since the closest I'll ever get to being under canvas is having a sneaky fag in a posh smoking area, with a canopy fluttering in the breeze, maybe he's right, but roughing it in a mobile home, with matresses as thin as Waifos ham is as much camping as I'll ever do.

Somehow though this year, the novelty of the whole experience had waned considerably. We arrived in lashing rain and the campsite looked desolate.

All the Irish were in the bar getting plastered (I'm sorry but it's true) and everyone else appeared to have retreated to their vans for a game of Old Maid.

I quickly deduced that I really only love camping when the sun is shining. I also realised when a family of, what seemed like fifty children moved in next door, that I also only like camping when the neighbours are quiet, law abiding citizens not pint sized blackguards who are up at the crack of dawn and put outside their caravan to play, which happens to be right outside your bedroom window.

As for the bathroom situation, well put it this way, when you can hear your neighbours going to the loo, you know you're in trouble.

The ipod went on full blast everytime one of us stepped foot inside the lavatory and our ablutions were performed to the 80's Greatest Hits. Well you have to have some boundaries.

I was mad to do a bit of washing so I ventured over to the launderette one morning to be greeted by half the population of Cork all queueing up to do theirs aswell. What is it about Irish people and washing? No other nationality seems to do it on holidays.

After a lengthy palaver with the non-English-speaking laundry lady, a deal was struck. It cost me €8 to do a load of washing and then all my smalls got stuck in the machine!

Major panic ensued as I tried to explain the severity of the situation and after much exclaimations and mutterings from Mrs Mop, my knickers were retrieved.

So although the rest of us was fairly grotty due to a trickling excuse for a shower, at least we had clean underwear to put on each night when the highlight was sitting on the deck, drinking cheap Spanish beer and playing Old Maid and a Hundred and One.

Yes I definitely think I'm over the camping thing. Me in a hoodie? It was never going to last!

Wexford People

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