This weekend was spent doing something a little bit different and was just what I needed.
S and I went away camping at Loch Tay in Perthshire, about a 2 hour drive away from Glasgow. We stayed in something called a Geodome which is a kind of domed tent with a bed, a wood burning stove and a couple of beanbag chairs and a coffee table inside. I know it’s not ‘camping’ in the traditionalists sense but I’ll admit after having my major operation where they pretty much cut right across my back, in addition to my front, I’ve not been able to sleep properly on cold, hard ground. Plus this way it means you get a decent night’s sleep and then you’ve got enough energy to do all the good stuff during the day – I’d just be tired and grumpy otherwise. The wood burning stove was brilliant too as it meant that the ‘tent’ was nice a cozy when we went to bed and the height of the dome meant that you could stand up properly making it easier to get dressed etc in the morning. The coffee table and chairs were brilliant as the dome had a clear section that served as a window meaning we could chill out in the morning with a coffee and breakfast looking at the wonderful view.
The views were definitely something to enjoy looking at too – the campsite we were based on was on the banks of Loch Tay on a sloped area looking over to the surrounding mountains, it really was stunning.
We arrived on Friday evening, found our home for the weekend and once we had put our things inside lit the barbecue outside to make dinner. Half the fun of camping for me is that I get to ‘play’ with fire. I love everything about cooking on a real fire, from the smell to the taste and the mesmerizing quality of flames. I had organised for us to have pork kebabs with tzatziki in pita breads for dinner on the Friday night so we got the coals lit as soon as possible to allow them to get hot enough to cook on. This weekend was also S’s ‘half’ birthday which sounds a bit cheesy but his actual birthday is the 27th December so everyone is very wrapped up in Christmas and it’s not really the weather to do anything like that so I’ve decided to move his birthday to the mid-point, June. Plus that also means I get to go on an adventure under the pretence of celebrating his birthday! Ha ha!
Because of this I also made S’s favourite carrot cake as a ‘birthday’ cake and although the candles didn’t light in the wind he said it tasted good which is a win in my book!
On Saturday after having breakfast we decided to go for a little drive and check out the local mountain – Ben Lawers. I wish I’d taken my Garmin with me because I’d be interested to know just how far we walked and how high we were. We actually didn’t get to the top, my bloods weren’t playing ball once again and I started to feel a little woozy so we decided to start making our way back down again. I’m determined to make it to the top next time! Hopefully we’ll be a bit more prepared too, I was wearing a fleecy hoodie which was too hot at the bottom and didn’t wick away any sweat and then wasn’t wind proof for further up which made me quite chilly – I would also like some better walking boots, mine were admittedly quite cheap and I find that my feet slide about quite a lot in them so getting some new ones properly fitted would be a good thing too.
Regardless of not making it to the top the views were pretty fantastic from the height we got to and it was definitely worth the effort to even get to where we did.
We headed back down and back to the campsite for a welcome cup of tea and some more carrot cake. We then headed down the hill a little way to the on site pub / restaurant for a couple of drinks by the water before heading back to our dome to make dinner for the night – steak, baked potatoes and corn on the cob. I’d welcome any suggestions on how to make baked potatoes work on the barbecue because mine were pretty much a disaster! I had boiled them for about 20 minutes earlier in the week before wrapping them in a double layer of foil with some butter and salt and pepper and then we put them in the coals of the barbecue for probably 30 minutes and they were still rock hard and raw in the middle! Oh well, better luck next time! After that we had to have the obligatory toasted marshmallows on the fire – I know, I know, I’m pretty much diabetic and shouldn’t be eating basically a fluffy blob of sugar but I LOVE toasted marshmallows and I don’t do it regularly and only had a couple so my sugars seemed to stay ok.
Yesterday afternoon was spent tidying everything back into my flat and washing all my clothes – I love cooking on a fire and camping but boy do you stink when you get home! I’ve since washed my hair twice and I can still smell the smoke!
I wouldn’t trade it for the world though, I had a great time!