One of the best parts of camping for me is the first morning, waking before everyone else and enjoying a coffee and some reading/writing/Bible study. Never at home am I disciplined enough to get up at 6am and sit drinking coffee and reading but I’m not sure if there’s something about being surrounded by my sleeping family and the sound of nature, that makes it lovely or the fact that I just can’t stay on an air bed any longer! Either way and maybe it’s a bit of both, it’s so peaceful. Maybe the calm before the storm?
Actually, it is the calm after the storm, literally, this morning! Despite our friends arriving on site at the sensible time of mid-afternoon, we did not arrive (due to work and kids social commitments) until almost 7pm. God had been gracious and answered my prayer as I watched the thunderstorm being pushed back hour by hour on the weather app throughout the day, but now at 7pm, all our tent innards laid bare on the grass, it was all hands on deck to set up base camp before the looming dark clouds opened and blessed this long hot summer with the downpour we’d all been praying for. Surprisingly, all four kids mucked in, inflating furniture and assembling temporary kitchen units, even hammering tent pegs.
We were almost finished (we just didn’t get our porch up so have a tent full of kitchen) when the rains came. Torrential, a downpour of a magnificent kind. The sky turned purple-black and the lightning was relentless! It was as though it had literally been held back for hours and was angry now, really angry.
The storm raged on as we made our beds, enjoyed toast and warm drinks, played cards (we learned a new game, SPOONS which was hilarious) and then after reading to the youngest and drugging them both (it’s ok its prescribed 😉) one by one they fell asleep.
Then the real disaster struck! As I sighed and decided to have a cup of tea before bed. I realised the only thing we had forgotten – the kettle!
A quick visit from our friends, the neighbours and I was rescued! Kettle borrowed, Earl Grey tea in hand, sat on the giant inflatable armchair with feet up on the footstool and my book to enjoy to the soundtrack of the pitter-patter on the roof of the tent, whilst feeling rather satisfied that we made it!
So here I am, the first morning, coffee in hand, again enjoying the peaceful sounds of nature (and the sound of a very young family, a couple of tents away, desperately trying to entertain toddlers). I know our youngest will be up like a shot if I so much as sneeze so I make sure to turn the hob off the second it begins to whistle and reminisce to a time when it was much more difficult. With toddlers and camping as a family of 5 (the 18-year-old teen no longer joins us for the craziness that is camping) in our first tent that was half the size of this one!
I’m contemplating waking the husband as the rain has finally stopped and if we don’t make a start on this porch we won’t have it down before the next storm forecast for later this morning. I’m also interested to hear his version of events since arrival which I am certain will be very different from mine. 🤣
Trying very hard not to worry about how we will dismantle a very wet tent tomorrow afternoon at the end of an extremely wet weekend, I am now off to boil milk for porridge. The youngest is awake. Believe it or not, I really do love this camping lark!