Unpredictability - Good for your health

Our modern life is based on organising an environment free from the unexpected. The house needs to be as stable and reliable as possible. The job as safe as possible. Nothing should break down. Nothing but what we predict, should occur.
This is the life of the zoo animal. Let's explore the life of the Nomad. Let's live the life of the Nomad.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Easter Friday

The preceding week had been a bit depressing.  The relationship between C and I had come to an end and here I was once again single.  To be single is not necessarily a bad thing, on the contrary it can free up a lot of energy and time.  But neither is it ideal since you can end up talking to yourself in the mirror.  To C, if you read this blog, let me say thank-you for joining me on this short journey through this short life of ours.

So there I was sat in my caravan on the field, wondering what was to become of my life.  I looked out through the caravan's front window at the rusty old van of mine.  She looked like I felt, tired and dishevelled.  I wasn't happy with myself about this.  What sort of nomad was I!!!  What sort of nomad would neglect his rusty old van?  And then my thoughts turned to the Easter break and it was like staring into the abyss.  Four whole days without work and no idea how to fill in the time by myself.

A few weeks ago I took my two girls to see a film called 'We Bought a Zoo', and we all enjoyed this film.  It is based on a true story about a widowed man who waved goodbye to his office job and purchased a zoo.  It detailed all the obstacles he and his family had to surpass to bring the zoo to sustainability and profit.  So for me the idea to go and see the real zoo this film was based upon seemed like something worth doing.  I would travel, with the kids, the three hundred miles or so to Devon to see this great zoo over the Easter break.

I went out and pumped up the van's tyres, and topped the oil, the radiator fluid and the washer fluid.  I gave her a new fuel filter and drove her down the road to a yard where a group of Romany Gypsies earn their living selling, repairing and washing cars.  I knew these fine industrious, dark skinned people would do a great job.  As they cleaned and waxed the outside of the van, I tidied up the inside with the Flash and the elbow grease.  Half an hour later the van was transformed.  She was gleaming and purring.  We were ready for another adventure.

So on the Friday morning I leave the campsite at 7.00 am and head to Brighton to pick up my two girls, and also my eldest daughter's best friend.  We head out West to North Devon to a place called Combe Martin.  I had booked a static caravan on a holiday park and I was lucky to have found this booking since most places had sold out.

This was a John Fowler holiday park and after reading a few reviews on the Internet I was a bit concerned.  Some gave a superb rating, and some said the chalets and vans were damp, dirty and full of dog's hair.  I was also concerned my 23 year old van wouldn't make the journey.  But after eight hours stopping and starting on the busy Easter roads, we arrived in one piece at the holiday park.  The van really is a fine vehicle - and she didn't let us down on this journey.

The holiday park was superb.  The static caravan was clean, warm, damp free and very spacious.  Of course most holiday makers will have to adjust to a living space smaller than their home space while on holiday.  But for me the opposite is true.  This static caravan felt like a palace.  A nomad's dream.  All the amenities of a house but in a caravan.  Flushing toilet, full sized fridge, mains connected water and a full lounge.

A google directions check revealed a two and a half hour journey to the Dartmoor Zoo, so this would be a waste of time given there are a number of zoos local to Combe Martin - ironically we wouldn't be seeing the attraction that inspired the trip, but this is how life is sometimes.  So after all that travelling to a stunning location overlooking majestic hills and sea and rock - what do you think the kids wanted to do?  Ten pin bowling. So that is exactly what we did, and I am happy to say the writer won the game.  We returned to the static, all exhausted. It didn't take us long to fall into our slumber.


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