Local Heart, Global Soul

May 17, 2014

Camping In The Ardennes… For The Active And The Lazy By The River…

Filed under: BELGIUM,La Roche-en-Ardenne,The vaguarities of Parenting — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,
(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The reason that we’ve come to La Roche-en-Ardenne in the first place stems from a friend’s invitation to join him and his daughter who are camping there.

They’ve got a large tent and the idea is that the kids will all sleep together in one part and our friend in the other, leaving Himself and I to the rented accommodation in the town close by.

In practice Kiwi Daughter had tummy troubles and ended up in the single bed in our room both nights and Little Mr. slept well in his sleeping bag in the tent.

The tent is literally metres away from the water: fortunately the Dutch have an amazing 96%   participation of the populations children  in national swimming certificate programmes and all of the kids  in the group are confident swimmers.

They are still not left unsupervised of course, but it severely lowers the risks if you already know they have an excellent grounding in water safety.  The water is particularly shallow at this point in the river, the kids can wade with ease and the inflatable dinghy is a huge hit as they paddle, splash and generally mess about on the water with the boat.

The adults get to sit just outside splashing distance on the bank and offer advice and encouragement to whoever is loosing the water battle at the time, the weather is excellently warm and even after a BBQ dinner the kids play until fading light (and parental persuasion) forces them to get ready for bed.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

At least all this non-stop physical activity  ensures they sleep well.  Himself and I  give Little Mr. our kisses Goodnight and take Kiwi  Daughter back to our rooms. Her tummy problems are frequent, partly because she doesn’t drink enough water and gets blocked up and partly because despite being the oldest she often the kid who chickens out of  new situations that she’s unsure of.

In this case I think the night noises, the idea of there only being a thin tent wall between her and “the nature” and Himself and I not being there the whole night to reassure her are enough to make her prefer to be with us.

It’s also happened before (and since) when we had either a camper or a cabin plus a tent as a family: Kiwi Daughter’s bravado at  the idea of tenting lasts until nightfall and then suddenly  she’s inside with Mama, usually because “her tummy hurts”.

She’s getting braver and more mature on many levels but the “great outdoors” is still somewhere she finds a little daunting. Back on this weekend in 2012   we figure that forcing the issue isn’t going to make her feel any braver so,  just as well there is a back-up option. (Kid photos edited for internet privacy). In the end everyone sleeps brilliantly and the next day were were all up bright and early to enjoy yet another day of beautiful weather.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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