Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Me and camping again

Our family is on a camp out again, 2 weeks in the Netherlands, with 2 kids and this time 2 small kittens as well.
We booked 2 weeks in 2 different camp sites from the same group of campsites.
We did it via a vacation eBay sort of thing, and got both weeks rather cheap, being Dutch and all. . . .

This time we took our old campervan, a VW LT28 from ‘79 so no rental tent or bungalow, our own spot you know. Well the first campsite is actually a sort of an all in camp thing really; they have a swimming pool, cafeterias, shop and even entertainment for the kids. The swimming pool is a so called subtropical swimming paradise, with slides and what not, even a sauna and a Turkish steam bath. Low and behold they even have wifi and cable, so that is nice when you have a blog and haven’t had the time to work in advance.

After driving there at a super speed of 80 km/h, the kids and the kittens are not in the best of moods, so we set up camp in no time. We can give the kittens some rest to sleep and the kids a good swim so all sorted I’d say, everybody happy.
We were at the back of the whole park and had a really good place with space and good neighbours, so I am pleased. I got more than a few beers offered and spend more than a few back, but after a week your social skills need to be at top, not to step on too many toes. That is what you get for not camping in the wild, but camping in a social happening. Man I look forward for the times where we can go wild camping again, where nobody is offended if I fart or not. But keeping it cool, a week is just about enough not to get sick of any involuntarily chosen neighbours. In this spot though we even participated in a field barbeque with 12 spot or campplaces or what is the word. Darn I hated not to have some good chillies with me, but I got a great sauce from the neighbour left of me. 30 odd people that have never met before, had a great time and some good food, shared stories and beer.
So, in between of having a chat and a beer, some coffee and a swim, I wrote 2 blog posts knowing they had great internet. So I went upfront to ask for a 7 day ticket on the first day, and got told the internet didn’t work for a day. Now after the BBQ and water games, I went back up to the front desk, asking for the internet. It should have been sorted, but they were coming back the next day. “Do you want a week card for internet or just a day?” Well, I ask her if it makes any sense if I take a week’s worth of internet if it is about to work the next day, leaving us 3 days at this camp site. The girl behind the desk looks at me in sort of a glaze, that sentence was just about too difficult for her I guess. “Give me a ticket for a day, that is 24 hours isn’t it?” She replies: “Yes sir, and it works for a day. . . . .
So this evening I try to upload 2 blog posts and nothing happens, nothing works. Next morning before the swim and all I go up to the office and get to hear they will fix the internet that day, however that evening nothing works. Next day I get the same answer and my money back. Let’s keep happy, stressed out that I didn’t update my blog, I at least get my money back without a sorry.

Next week, next camping complex, this time with an open air swimming pool next to a fishing pool where you are not allowed keeping your fish. On the way down there we got lost looking for some ingredients in Germany that I need for my next recipe, but we’ll get there in time. . . . Eventually we got there, and driving into it all, I got paranoia really. There are fields with hooligans all wearing different kinds of shirts, to fields that look like a truck stop. I am really getting worries there, but at our luck we land in a field at the outskirts of the camping complex and it is relatively speaking rather quit there. We actually are almost next to a washing place and a shower complex so no long walks to get a good shower and wash my hair.

The neighbours here are far less social, thus giving me more time for our own little group, and less to worry about if I fart or not. That is good, just a hello and the weather is nice, that is all. However, as we have the kittens from 12 weeks old here, and being in the path from all that want to wash up or do the dishes. . . . . We are the place to visit for small kids and people that act like small kids asking if we don’t mind them petting the kittens, even the hooligans come over for a chat about the kittens. All in good harmony so this is nice if you are up bright and shiny, but not if you had the worst night’s sleep of a week.
Now, as this camping complex does not have a tropical swimming pool, it does not have showers at the pool, leaving us with the showers next door.

Using these showers however, I finally understood what is happening in the showers at all camp places in Holland. There must be this bloke in building in construction, tiling these floors. Whenever these floors look perfect, they are tiled in a certain way. They look like all the water is going down the drain, but whenever you trust the water going to the drain, and then it happens. The water slowly creeps to your shoes and clothes, making them all wet and soaking in the time you are doing your hair. This guy has to travel all through the Netherlands doing all the showers in all camping places, so watch out for this guy !
He is not alone though, because in the showers where the floor is spot on, the guy will see to it that one of his mates will put in a shower head that only squirts this little that you will have to run around to catch any water.

So for next time camping I will leave with the question, weather you want your clothes wet, or yourself dry.

Yours sincerely,

Bart J. Meijer

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