A very early morning at a time when most sensible people would still be in bed - 5.30am - saw me leaving home for my first break this year at my regular site on Anglesey. With very little traffic on the roads and just one brief stop to get a can of Coke the journey was very pleasant, made all the nicer by the blue sky and glorious sunshine. That was until I reached the turn-off on the A55 for Llandudno, then it just looked like someone had drawn a line across the sky with the north side being blue and sunny and the south side grey and cloudy. Looking across the water to Anglesey it didn't look great, with the whole of the island shrouded in thick grey cloud. Not ideal, but as long as it didn't rain I could live with it.
It was just before 8am when I pulled into the camp site entrance and I was just about to see if my barrier pass from last year still worked when the warden, Denise, poked her head out of her caravan door so I went across to pay her, exchanged the pass for a new 12-month one, then drove through to see if I could find a space in my favourite small field. Being still fairly early in the season the site wasn't busy so I was in luck - the space I occupied last time was vacant and there was a hook-up point available so I parked the van and leaving the dogs in the back out of the way I made a start on setting up my home for the weekend. Inspecting the hook-up post, which was new, I found that pre-payment meters had now been installed so I would have to buy a card from reception, however there was some credit left on from the previous user so at least I could plug in my cool-box to keep it running until later.
With everything finally set up I took Sophie and Sugar for a walk round the site then made a quick brew before deciding to check out the car boot sale on the outskirts of the village. There were plenty of stalls and though I walked round the whole place twice nothing caught my interest so I drove back to the site to chill out for the rest of the day - except the chilling out part didn't happen for quite some time.
On my way past reception I'd stopped to buy a pre-payment card for the hook-up meter but when I put it in the slot the amount wouldn't register no matter how many times I tried it. So it was a walk back to reception where Denise exchanged the card but even that didn't work, and by that time the remaining credit from previously had been used up. Back to reception again, and this time Pete came with me to check out the meter, and having tried himself to insert the card with no success he decided the meter was faulty. I had visions of having to spend the next three-and-a-half days with no power but Pete called out Nigel, the electrician, who arrived about twenty minutes later. After removing the front of the hook-up post he soon found the problem - someone had tried to insert a cardboard card which had broken off and jammed the meter. Removing the bits of cardboard from the very narrow slot proved near enough impossible so there was nothing for it but to install a new meter. With the amount now registered from my own card I finally had power, and once Nigel had gone and I'd taken a photo of the very grey view I could finally chill out as I originally intended.
With a chilly breeze blowing and the still-cloudy sky it wasn't really nice enough to sit outside so I retreated into the tent and spent the rest of the afternoon and evening alternately reading my book and watching a bit of tv. By 9.30pm my very early morning start and long day were rapidly catching up with me so it was time for an early bed; a dog walk through the site to reception and back made sure Sophie and Sugar would be okay for the night then I snuggled into my own bed with fingers metaphorically crossed for nice weather the following day.
- 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