Barcelona: Camping 1

I was practically born into camping. My first camping holiday was when I was about six months old, and the few times I spent in hotels didn’t exactly warm me to the idea. However, in one way, camping is exactly like staying in a hotel: the term describes a wide range of options, from very simple to very luxury. The American version of pitching your tent in the wild and shitting in the woods is unknown in most parts of Europe, probably because we don’t have many bears that can eat you up. People here go to campsites, which range from simple to holy fuck, how much does that cost?

Campsites near big cities, like the one we stayed at, have a very interesting social mix, since the residents range from students on a 20 bucks a day budget (been there, done that, it was great fun) to people with camping “cars” that cost twice as much as our house, extra car not included. Interestingly, those peple also had the cheapest, most uncomfortable folding chairs on the market, the very ones Mr and I had back in the day when we didn’t have the money or space for anything that didn’t leave you with a sore back.

Anyway, we clock somewhere in the middle, with a tendency to pack too much stuff and create utter chaos:

A caravan with a sun roof in front of it. Table and chairs under the sun roof. Lots of articles of daily life are cluttered all over.

What I personally like about this version is that you’re as protected from the elements as you need to be, but as open as possible. The campsite is on a piece of former farmland, so you live in nature, which gets me to our constant companions this holiday: ants.

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Jack’s Walk

©voyager, all rights reserved

The wooden structure in the middle of the cornfield is both a landmark and a viewing platform that will become part of a corn maze in the fall. The floor of the platform is a bit over 3 meters high so you can see that the height of the corn is not far off that mark. It seems too early for the corn to be this tall, but staff at our local farmer’s market tell me that new varieties of corn mature more quickly. So quickly in fact that they already had local corn for sale. It doesn’t seem that long ago that you had to wait until late August for corn-on-the-cob. I wonder when that changed?

The signs in the field are also for fall festivities when they will be used as targets for a pumpkin cannon.

Jack’s Walk

A fine set of pinecones, ©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s a bit warmer and a bit more humid today so Jack and I opted for a walk in our little wildflower forest, Trillium Woods. It was a good choice, too. We were shaded the whole way around and had the company of a very busy woodpecker pounding out a beat too fast to count. He was too far up to see properly so I can’t show you a photo, but he was so loud that the sound was bouncing off the trees and creating a sort of echo chamber that you could almost feel as a vibration. It was an interesting experience. Definitely physical and a bit exhilarating, but also a bit annoying and the short pauses the bird took were definitely a welcome break. Jack thought so too. I could see he was a bit anxious and every now and then he’d look up as if he was waiting for the sky to fall. All in all, an unexpected and different sort of adventure for Jack and I today.

Jack’s Walk

Roadside thistle, taller than me, ©voyager, all rights reserved

It’s another beautiful day in Southwestern Ontario so Jack and I took to the country for our outing. We had a lovely slow walk looking at all the growing things and finding everything healthy and big for this time of year. The corn is my eye high and even the weeds reach over my head. I love it when the plants are big enough to make you feel small and a bit like Alice through the looking-glass.

Jack’s Walk

Roadside Lilies, ©voyager, all rights reserved

Wild lilies, ©voyager, all rights reserved

These lilies grow wild in this area and right now is the height of their season. You see them everywhere, lining the roadside, filling the ditches and marking the edges of most every field. I love their bright colour and tall sturdy stems that allow them to sway in the breeze. I’ve tried to cut some to bring home in the past, but they don’t last so now I just admire them where they live.

Jack’s Walk

It’s a 32° day here with rain expected this evening and boy do we need it. It was supposed to rain all weekend, but we only had a bit of drizzle on Saturday so all the growing things are still thirsty. The heat today will only make that worse so I hope the weatherman has it right this time.

Note: Thanks to kestrel for correctly identifying this plant as False Solomon’s Seal.

 False Solomon’s Seal, ©voyager, all rights reserved


Jack’s Walk

Fanshaw pond, ©voyager, all rights reserved

The sunny skies in this photo didn’t last long. Rain clouds have moved in and it’s drizzling which is double good news. The first good news is that the growing things are finally getting a much-needed drink and the second good news is that the temperatures are staying in the mid-twenties.


Agnes, enjoying a good gnaw. Agnes was one of the triplets comprising Amelia, Magrat and herself. Like Alfie, Agnes was one of the Super Smartypants™. She was the thinker, and always figured things out first. Like Amelia, she was very outgoing, loved to play and wrestle, and was sweet natured to the core, with a wide streak of mischievousness. Click for full size.

© C. Ford, all rights reserved.