Early morning saw me off on my travels yet again, this time to Wyton Lakes adults-only site just outside Huntingdon in Cambridgeshire. I had only been at home for four days since my California trip and here I was, on the road again - (there's a song there somewhere, I think Willie Nelson sang it!). No wonder my family say I've turned into a gypsy - I'm rarely home now, and the van is permanently packed with all my gear! I suppose there's one good thing about that - friends and family can't use me as a private taxi as I've no room for passengers!
The drive down to Huntingdon was relatively easy - RAC Routeplanner had given me a journey time of slightly over three hours going via the M6 but I didn't fancy going that way and possibly getting held up in traffic round Birmingham so I opted to make the first part of the journey the same as if I was going down to Norfolk - over Woodhead Pass and take the M1 and A57, but then straight down the A1 and the A1M almost to Huntingdon itself. With a couple of short stops it took me about four hours going that way, but the weather was good and I wasn't in any particular hurry.
It had been two years since I was last at Wyton Lakes but as I drove through the gates into the site it looked just as I remembered it. Parking the van outside reception I went to book in with Louise, one of the owners, and was quite surprised to find she had given me the same pitch as the last time I was there, as she had remembered I had liked that particular one. Now after two years you don't expect that - definitely good customer service there! After a brief chat I drove round to my pitch and parked up, then made a quick brew before I started putting up the awning.
It was while I was drinking my coffee that my friend Steve phoned - having emailed each other during the week he knew where I was staying, and it seemed he was on his way to London on business so he said he would call in to see me on the way down. How odd that circumstances should turn out like that - I hadn't seen him for several years then I see him twice in a week! I was in the middle of pegging the awning down when he arrived - it did cross my mind to tell him to grab some tent pegs and the other hammer but he was dressed for business, not for hammering tent pegs into a hardstanding! He didn't stay very long though, and once he had gone I finished off the awning and put all my gear in place inside, then decided to go in search of something to eat. Having had no breakfast I was more than a little peckish and wanted something more substantial than toast and marmalade, so I drove down to Daylock Marine, which is on the riverside and almost next door to the site.
Daylock Marine is down a long dirt track off the main road and is actually a boat yard which provides boat repairs, moorings and a few hire boats, but there's also a nice little riverside cafe there which does good meals at reasonable prices, so one of their all-day breakfasts was definitely the order of the day. Having the dogs with me meant that I couldn't go inside the cafe unless I left them in the van and it was too warm for that, so I was quite happy to sit at one of the outside tables instead. And it was very pleasant sitting there in the sunshine watching the passing boats on the river - so pleasant in fact that when I'd finished my meal I ordered a second mug of coffee and lingered a while longer before going back to the site.
I spent quite a while relaxing in the sun outside the awning and chatting to one or two other residents who passed, but not one for being idle for too long when the weather is nice I took the dogs for a walk round the site and took a few photos - I would have taken more but the camera batteries needed charging. The site has a dog walk right round the perimeter, part of which runs by the riverside, and it was lovely and peaceful down there. I had expected to see at least one site resident fishing but there was no-one at all just then, not even a passing boat.
Back at the awning I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening relaxing and alternately watching tv and catching up with the posts on UKCS, then just before it went dark I took the dogs for their final walk round the site. It was a lot earlier than I would usually go to bed but it had been a long day and by then I was finding it hard to keep my eyes open, so after settling the dogs on their beds I settled myself into mine and it wasn't long before I was in the land of nod.
- Hi! I'm Eunice and I live in Bolton, Lancashire, with my two dogs Sophie and Sugar and an assortment of cats - well it used to be Sophie and Sugar, now it's Sophie and Poppie. I first began camping back in 1997 when my then partner took me to Anglesey for my birthday weekend. We slept in the back of the car - a hatchback - using the cushions off the settee at home as a mattress, and cooked and brewed up on a single burner camping stove. The site was good, the views were great, the weather fantastic and I was completely hooked. Following that weekend we got a two-man tent and some proper accessories and returned to Anglesey two weeks later, then over time we progressed to a three-man tent followed by an old trailer tent, then a new trailer tent, a campervan and finally a caravan. When my partner decided that the grass was greener on the other side of the street - literally - in April 2009 and I suddenly found myself alone after fifteen years, I decided there was no way I was going to give up camping and caravanning if I could cope on my own. This blog is the story of my travels, trials and tribulations since becoming a solo camper - I hope you like it