Before I start this blog post, I would like to say this:- I love my toilet!!! In fact I have been having dreams about the toilet in our house and I will never ever whinge about having to walk those few metres to contemplate the woes of life in that little room ever again.
Hello my Lovelies!
Welcome back to another Lesson on Life From Lois. It is such a pleasure to be here, writing to you once again. We have a riveting blog about camper trailer living and why the hell I love my toilet so much.
So grab a drink, put your feet up and read on!
As you may have realised, I have been quiet on the blog posting side of life for a wee while. I have been away from home and as I don’t have a lap-top of my own, you had to be patient and wait. I sincerely hope that life has been treating you with all the wonders of love, happiness and Scarlett’s blog posts on how her own life has been faring.
It is with much pleasure that I sit at my desk after nearly four weeks away from my home. With a cool winter breeze wafting in through the window and admiring the depth of green radiating from the grass, let alone the winter blooms in the garden that popped up while I was away.
So where did I disappear to for four weeks?
I was asked to disappear from the sanctuary of my home to live in our camper trailer by my Husband, while he did a stint of 3 weeks of night shift at a Power Station in the Wilds of the Australian Outback. We’ve all come to know that I love being anywhere my Man is and it all originated from, I needed a change of scenery not to mention alleviate that “Let’s go somewhere NOW syndrome” that attacks me every now and again.
In fact, I had been talking to The Redhead about taking off to Darwin for a bit of fun. Only a little drive of some 3,370 kilometres one way. A few eyebrows were raised at that one! So, when I noticed in my emails that The Redhead had been offered the work in our old stomping ground of Redneck County, we leapt at the chance to disappear and leave the family to fend for themselves.
A couple of years ago, we bought the camper trailer when personally, I have always dreamt of owning a caravan. One of those things that you park, press a button and the awning extends within seconds and moments later you are sitting in the shade, sprawled on a chair sipping on a cold glass of heaven. Alas, our finances have never sprung to that sort of heaven on wheels and the husband had been looking into a upgrade from our Taj Mahal Tent that slept 14 to a new modern camper trailer instead.
The Taj Mahal of Campers
So one bright morning before the sun had come up, we headed 16 hours south of where we lived, with Frodo and Scarlett for company down to a destination where our new purchase lay waiting.
If you have no idea what a camper trailer is…. it is literally a house made of canvas folded up on the back of a 6 foot 4 foot trailer. The bed is located on top of the trailer and accessed by a ladder. The rest of the camper is pulled out to turn into a 18 foot home, creating a sleeping area for 6 people comfortably which then has walls attached to create the kitchen and living room zone. You can then alternately add more walls to enlarge the area or add a outside sitting area.
Sounds bloody amazing in theory, until you actually have to put it all together. You can achieve everything with two people but an army of people is much easier on the legs and arms! First time The Redhead and I put it all together, we weren’t speaking after 4.5 hours of him being a pedantic pain in the arse.
When we bought it, we added some extra essentials to make ‘camping’ more desirably fun! We created a fully stocked kitchen, removed the foam mattress and instead installed a fully inner spring mattress, added a television, a port-potty complete with its own shelter, solar panels to generate more power, a heavy duty generator, lounging chairs, spare battery for power, water for the kitchen, gas bottles, new lighting, tables and blankets etc. The camper trailer is always packed and ready for action or guests in our backyard at a moment’s notice.
So all we needed to do was add our own personal items we needed into the back of the 4 wheel drive for the next 4 weeks of living away from home.
By the time we left, my mate, Billy the Cattle Dog was no longer speaking at all to me. Because we were going somewhere in ‘his‘ four wheel drive without him. It is our own fault because the dog goes pretty everywhere with us. Except this time, I elected to leave him in the care of Frodo, The Princess and Scarlett. Don’t worry, I missed him so badly and he hasn’t left my side since we have returned home!
Anyway, we left three of our children snoozing in the early hours of the morning and with our youngest son Pablo leading the way on his motorbike, we left for our destination. It was a real pleasure to sit back in the car, admiring the confidence of our son’s riding abilities. The early morning sparkle of the sun beaming off the leaves and feeling the change of temperatures as we drove through the countryside, up hill, down valley and long stretches of landscape while watching dawn greet us.
We stopped some 4 hours later and leapt into the waiting arms of The Gothic Goddess who had been patiently waiting for her own man, Pablo to arrive. For the past year, the two of them have been living a long distance relationship, hundreds of kilometres apart and for the next 3 weeks they would be together once again.
I may have wept at their first “I love you”…. the tenderness was almost tangible to touch. It brought back many memories of my own being apart from my own Man and when I was able to leave New Zealand to be in his arms forever. My own man and I left them to gaze contently into each other’s eyes while melting into each other’s arms, as the silence of being together told each other all they felt about the other.
Which would carry onto our home for the next few weeks.
Our rather lovely caravan park located in Redneck County that offered its own lake, bird life galore and beautiful surroundings of open farm land was another hour’s drive away. As we went about setting up the camper trailer, which I would like to point out with my Husband being rather pedantic about how it is set up, he managed to have everything looking spic and span within 3 hours this time!
Just as I was close to tearing my hair out from frustration, Pablo and The Gothic Goddess arrived and saved my sanity. Thank God! So with Pablo’s arrival, I was told to park my arse in the lounging chair alongside The Gothic Goddess; where we spent the time talking nonstop and catching up on the news.
It was only after we had the camper trailer set up and everything was looking real smick and comfortable that I happened to mention, “Where is the port-a-potty?”
Red and I turned around and looked at the 30+ metre walk to the toilet/shower block that greeted us when we realised, Oh Shit! When it comes to camping in the wilderness, we had left the most important bit of comfort behind in the garage and that being the bloody toilet. It was that moment reality struck that I realised, I’d have to damn well walk all hours of the day and night to the amenities block!
I know you’re sitting there thinking, ‘so what?’ and my excuse or reason that I’m admitting to is… I am afraid of the dark.
Yes, at 50 something years old…. I am still afraid of the dark and to be honest, I don’t think that phobia is removing itself from my life any time soon. I didn’t use to be afraid of the dark but when I was little, my Dad (who had a tendency to be a raving lunatic) locked me out of the house. Even after sobbing for what seemed hours, I ended up falling asleep curled up near the front door in the dark.
So the dark holds a great fear for me.
Just like swimming does.
My Dad ruined that joy, by first dangling me head first off a pier and then releasing me. I had never been taught to swim nor in those days allowed to because I was born with a serious heart condition. All I remember is gulping water as the water went over my head. He had to dive in only after my Mother screaming at him to get me. Least to say, we spent some time at the hospital after I had a heart attack from the shock.
My darling Man bought extra lighting for the camper so when I was alone while he was at work, I wouldn’t feel afraid. However, having to walk outside the camper to the amenities block required alot of courage and alot of ‘holding on’ until I was near bursting and making the dash to contemplate the woes of life in the little room.
Last year, we were back in Redneck County, the Husband was off at work and my fear of the dark became even more intensified when I was home alone in the camper, about to go to sleep; when 3 young people decided to ‘break in’ and a drunken idiot from a nearby camp site decided he might like to ‘pop in’ for a night visit after hearing that nice lady next door was all alone!
I was so traumatized, I am now even more paranoid about the dark and being alone.
Anyway, the numerous hobbles to the toilet/shower block almost had me in tears a few times. Don’t get me wrong, I am made of tough material and it takes alot to knock me to my knees. But just before we left to head to the County, my body decided to have a full Lupus relapse. My right knee which has been previously dislocated decided to re-dislocate itself and re-set itself without warning and that nightly climb up the ladder made life a little less bearable.
One particular night after I had been out driving all day, sending the husband off to work, I decided to get the courage up to have a shower and tell myself, “You are not afraid. You are Safe. Nothing can hurt you.” So there I am in the shower enjoying the hot water pelting on my seriously sore bones and listening to my music from my phone, when I hear this man’s voice, “Nice music.”
To which he proceeds to start singing.
Thinking he is outside at the door of the actual block which clearly states ‘women only‘, I hear the shower next door turn on and realize this bloke is actually having a bloody shower! I froze in panic mode and wild thoughts of ‘W.T.F! and shall I scream?’ are racing through my head, I stand stock still and then burst into hysterics!
My only thought after the shock was…. Only in Redneck County.
One of the most comical moments of living in the camper trailer and the Husband being away at work for 12+ hours each night, was the introduction of Mickey and Minnie Mouse to my nightly party for one. They turned up one night while I was rugged up watching television. They sat beside my chair for ages cleaning their whiskers and occasionally looking at me after they realized I wasn’t afraid or going to scream blue murder in their direction. So began the nightly whisker cleaning brigade.
Even the introduction of some nice new mouse traps didn’t deter these shifty, little sneaky shits from helping themselves to my favourite coffee in sachets or my Husband’s biscuits. Or hell, having a drink from the washing up bowl which had clean water in it ready for the next day. They became so brazen that they took to turning up during the day as well as night, before spending all night trying to eat the plastic containers and rejecting the ‘eviction order’ we issued them.
However, I will always be eternally grateful for a phone call I got from our son Frodo, who had gone down to house sit for some friends in Sydney. He called to ask how we were faring. It had been 2 weeks since I had seen any of the kids. As you know, our family is very close and we are in each other’s personal space alot.
You would think I would jump at the chance of saying adios amigo to the kids?
I did for a few days and then I began missing the pleasure of seeing them upon waking each day, the tender kiss at night before bed and the cuddles on the couch shared while watching movies. Or the preparation of dinner, arguments about washing up dishes and whose clothes in the basket need washing.
Frodo thought I had Pablo staying with me to keep me company at nights. He was supposed to be until I ordered him to be with his darling girl instead. That was MORE important to me. I did happen to mention I was lonely to Frodo and before I knew it, he did the big brother thing and issued orders from Sydney that his siblings were to make the drive out to me and spend a night or two with me, while Daddy was at work.
Thank you Frodo, you will never know what pleasure that phone call brought me as each of my beloved kids made the drive to stay with us.
The drive home after packing up our belongings (2 hours this time!) was wonderful. We were finally going home and all you could hear was the radio raging was The Husband I singing our hearts out with joy. That first delicious cuddle and squeals of “you are home!” wont be forgotten. It should be noted, it was deliciously pleasurable to park my arse on that white seat in the little contemplation room without worry. Until someone screamed out, “MUM! For fuck’s sake, I need the damn loo…. NOW!”
So here I am home and filled of love, that I’ve missed ever so muchly.
I hope your home brings this much joy into your lives, that the pleasures of life are sweet and next time your contemplating life in the little room, be thankful you didn’t have to walk 30 metres for ones and twos.