A sunny evening at 7.30pm saw me setting off for the Elvaston Castle steam rally and a long weekend's camping. The van was still packed from my last weekend away so I'd only needed to rearrange a few things the day before and add a few last minute items; I'd been working till 7pm so a quick dash home to change out of my work clothes, feed the cats and collect the dogs and I was on my way. The drive down to Elvaston was very pleasant in the evening sunshine, I made good time and arrived just less than two hours later.
After I'd booked in with the stewards and collected my wristband and passes I drove up the main field, through the gap in the hedge and over towards the top end of the next field where I knew it would be nice and quiet. There was still some daylight left but it was fading and I knew I wouldn't be able to get the tent up and pegged down before it went dark, however I was prepared for that. Having made up a single bed in the van I could sleep in there for the night then put the tent up the following morning; all I needed to do just then was put up the small table, fish out the suitcase stove and make a brew - I'd even filled my water container at home so I wouldn't have to be searching round the field for a tap.
My small table is one of those with folding legs which have screw-in extensions and when I set it down on the ground it fell over; thinking that the ground must be very uneven just there I moved the table a few feet away but it fell over again, then I realised - I hadn't screwed one of the legs in! Time for bed I thought - I'd had a busy day and I was obviously getting tired. With the table finally standing up properly I took the dogs for a quick walk along the top of the field, settled them in the back of the van then made a mug of cappuccino and finally climbed up into my own bed. With the van's overhead light on I read a magazine while I drank my coffee then settled down for the rest of the night. The weather forecast had said it was to be very warm and sunny for the next few days so if that was right then I was looking forward to having a very good weekend.
- 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