So, counter-intuitively, back to day one (I’m writing this several weeks in); me heading out towards the beach, with no plan and a Camper full of Animals.
I pottered along the road with no sat nav, still getting used to Enid as I haven’t driven anything bigger than a hatchback since I had a job moving furniture around when I was a teenager. Since I have a compass on the dash I thought I’d just head east and stop before I drove into the ocean. I haven’t driven without sat nav in years, and I didn’t realize how awesome it is you see so much more on the side of the road, cause you’re double checking all the signs, it felt much more like experiencing travelling than driving somewhere, would highly recommend next time you’re not in a rush to get somewhere.
I went through Boston, which I’ve never been to before. Although I didn’t stop I did see they have an old-timey windmill on the way through, so that was cool, might check it out of I go back there.
From there I went north, I did intend to get to Skegness and stop in one of the gajillion campsites there, but I forgot how tiring driving such a big vehicle can be (and that’s forgetting the fact that Enid has a 50/50 chance of getting in gear when you push the stick, and her power steering is on the fritz).
Anyway I ended up stopping at this place called Olde Leake
In a campsite that was both expensive and unimpressive, with the owner warning me the field I was staying in was liable to flood in light rain. I was too tired at this point to really argue, and so coughed up my cash for the underwater field pitch with no electricity only to discover my leisure battery wasn’t properly charged (If you read the first CFOA post, this is the first noob mistake I was talking about.) Although to be fair, this was only a small error on my part, since I did check the leisure battery when I bought Enid, but, in my hubris and rushing off so quickly, I hadn’t checked it before setting off that morning. So no power. So my phone died, taking with it my sat nav, my alarm clock and my ability to contact anyone.
Not that I was using my satnav, it just would have been nice to have the option. Not that I was planning on calling anyone, it would just have been nice to be able to.
So my first night was spent in a wet field, eating cold beans out of a tin, reading the only trashiest book I could find on my kindle; a Christmas romance, perfect for the start of September…. ( the review of which you can find here) Still, I had a good time, I had the animals, and the whole thing felt very thematic and fitting, if nothing else I was smart enough to pack enough warm layers, so I was cozy, I snuggled up with my terrible book and determinedly enjoyed myself.
The next day did not get off to a great start, I wanted to find a half decent campsite that didn’t cost an arm and a leg, so set off, in search of a McDonalds to charge my phone and steal their internet. I went through Skegness, too terrified to park anywhere in the giant transit I’m only half comfortable driving, and ended up right up north near Sutton-on –Sea.
Tripping over this great ice cream place.
(There was supposed to be a picture here, but I’ve somehow lost it… If you’re that curious click here to check it out)
Apparently they make all their ice cream in house and they had great flavours like Apple Pie and Amaretto, I didn’t have anything then (I went back later in the week, I’ll detail in my next post), since I had a grand total of two quid to my name after being ripped off at the previous campsite. But I bought a coffee, charged my phone and found:
A campsite owned, I found on arrival, by the sweetest woman alive, who fussed over me, on hearing I liked walking loaded me down with leaflets on local trails and gave me eggs from her hens.
I stayed for three days and she came to chat to me every day. I had a great time, not activity heavy really, but I explored the area, tried to fix my battery problem and got some work done, and generally enjoyed being a hippy, doing yoga outside my van in the morning and spending hours watching the shenanigans of the ducks and chickens who lived there.
Incidentally I didn’t fix my battery problem, but it didn’t matter just then since the campsites electric was a good price (Seriously I can’t big this campsite up enough, if you have a plan to camp in Lincolnshire check it out, if nothing else to meet the couple that own it, check it out here).
Make sure you like birds though, they’re everywhere.
As I said before, I did have some problems, the cooker still wasn’t firing so the only hot meal I could make were eggs in a kettle, eating cold the rest of the time, the battery remained a mystery and without the battery there was no shower, so I had to wash by sluicing myself down with bucket water.
But all in all the first five days were relatively successful. I’m moving on to the weekend next… This is where the breakdowns start happening but I also have a lot of beach stories, so swings and roundabouts; subscribe for the next post detailing sleeping in lorry parks and getting cheered at in Skegness bowling alley for being the world’s biggest failure.