Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Peter and Jane Go Camping

Today it is the start of a  Bank Holiday weekend, and Peter and Jane are going camping with Mummy and Daddy.

It has taken quite a lot of persuasion for Daddy to get Mummy to go camping.

Mummy went camping once before with the Girl Guides and it ended rather badly when the Guide Leader confiscated Mummy's fags and told her she was a disgrace to Girl Guiding.

Mummy was already aware she was a disgrace to Girl Guiding, but she was annoyed about her fags.

This time Daddy has promised that there will be booze, and Mummy had to give up smoking anyway because Peter and Jane's school brainwashed them into being very judgmental about it.

It is hard to enjoy a crafty fag when you are being stalked by small children who jump out at you screaming "YOU ARE GOING TO DIIIIIIIIE!!!!!"

Mummy has actually rather come round to the idea of camping and has visions of Breton tops and hampers and Enid Blyton style japes and frolics on the beach, and some really good smug Instagram opportunities.

Despite all the evidence to the contrary, Mummy is an eternal optimist.  A mostly drunken optimist, but an optimist all the same.

Mummy has packed a selection of adorable shoes and floaty skirts and several bottles of gin and lugs her suitcase and her hamper out to Daddy's car.

"What the fuck are they?" says Daddy as he surveys her luggage.

Daddy and Peter and Jane appear to have only packed a selection of nasty nylon rucksacks.

Mummy does not do rucksacks.

After a brief row, Daddy grudgingly loads the suitcase, and the booze stuffed hamper in to the car.

Mummy distinctly hears Daddy mutter "This is fucking ridiculous" about her hamper, but she chooses to ignore him, for she knows he will be glad of it when they arrive at the adorable campsite.

Peter and Jane and Mummy and Daddy set off.

Daddy has to drive, because Mummy is not allowed to drive Daddy's car, because he doesn't understand that it is not really Mummy's fault that she quite often accidentally drives into things by mistake, and Daddy refuses to travel in Mummy's car because apparently it 'stinks'.  Mummy thinks Daddy is a supercilious bastard, but she can have a little sleep if he drives.

The sun is shining and Mummy made being allowed to play her Nineties Hits CD in the car a condition of coming, and everything is really quite lovely.

After half an hour, the Bank Holiday Traffic Jams start. 

As the car grinds to a halt, Jane screams "Peter is looking at me." 

"I am not!" shouts Peter.



"Mummy, tell Peter to stop looking at me NOW!" Jane screeches.

Mummy remains quite serene throughout this exchange, because Mummy had the foresight to stash little cans of G&T in her handbag, and she has already had three.

Daddy is not as serene.  There is a vein throbbing in Daddy's temple in a most alarming way.


"What about a nice game of ISpy?" slurs Mummy.

"I really, really, really need a wee." says Peter.

Three hours later, Mummy and Daddy and Peter and Jane arrive at the campsite.

After an hour in the traffic jam, Peter had to wee into one of Mummy's empty gin cans.

It is with difficulty that he is made to put the can of piss in the bin, as he is determined to keep it as a souvenir.

The campsite is not entirely what Mummy expected.  It is a field, with tents in it.  And some mobile home caravans.  And a very Soviet looking toilet block.  Mummy had presumed there would be bunting, and perhaps some jaunty old fashioned gypsy caravans.  Maybe ponies.

"Help me put the tent up." says Daddy.

Mummy looks at Daddy blankly.  Mummy cannot think of one single thing she has ever done in her life that could have given Daddy the impression that she might know how to help put a tent up.

Mummy mutters a vague excuse about taking Jane to the toilet and wanders off, leaving Daddy and Peter to deal with the tent.


Daddy has finally got the tent up, and Peter has stopped having hysterics after getting trapped inside in the process.

Mummy is sitting in the sunshine with another little gin, and thinking that despite the unsatisfactory toilet situation and the general fieldiness of the field she is in, camping is not so bad.  There is a nice pub just outside the field, where Mummy has insisted they will be going for dinner, and there will be plenty of wine and chips, and Mummy has taken lots of really good photos and put them on Instagram.

Mummy is not entirely sure where Peter and Jane are, but she thinks they have probably gone to have some japes and frolics and will doubtless come back when they have thwarted the plans of a dastardly gang of lower class criminals.

At bedtime, the horrid reality of what she has done dawns on Mummy.  

Mummy has allowed herself to be blinded by visions of Breton tops and Instagram smugness and now Mummy is going to have to sleep in a field!  In a tent, with Peter and Jane and Daddy.

Mummy is in her sleeping bag.  Mummy is not happy about this.

Daddy farts.  Peter farts.  Jane farts.

Daddy snores.  Peter snores.  Jane snores.

Mummy is trapped in a noisy nylon bag of stench and outside it is dark and there is field and there might be cows and the only place to wee has already been wee'd in many times by dubious sorts who don't look like they shop at Waitrose.

Mummy is not drunk enough for this shit.

The next morning it is raining.  The tent is wet.  Mummy is wet.  The hamper is wet. Peter and Jane are wet.  Daddy is not wet because he is a smug twat and has some special hi-tech jacket.  If the jacket was slightly less fucking ugly, Mummy would demand he lend it to her, but Mummy has standards and she would rather be a drowned rat than wear anything so hideous.

The people staying in the caravans look out complacently at Mummy shivering in the rain.

Mummy thinks "What has it come to that I am envying the caravan people?"

Mummy says "Fuck this shit Daddy, we are going home."