As I write this, I am sitting in what looks from the outside like a flat-roofed summer house. Inside it is warm and unlike most garden buildings, it has no cobwebs, dust or garden rakes in the corner. In fact it is incredibly clean and there is even a small cupboard with a broom and dustpan and brush. It doesn’t feel in any way as if I am camping and it would have been much less effort to come here if we hadn’t been so conditioned into going away to campsites in our motor home. We packed food we will probably not eat because we only have a microwave, several layers of warm clothes and too many shoes, anticipating soggy conditions across the campsite, forgetting we won’t be walking on wet grass.

I feel a fraud. What am I doing here in this warm curtained space with a roomy shower room when everyone else on the campsite is running across to the communal loos or showering in tiny spaces, some with hand-basins being folded away to make space for them to stand under tepid water? I exaggerate of course. Some larger, newer caravans will probably be nearly as comfortable as this, but not quite so roomy. On the other hand, they may not need to lower a hidden bed, which we will. We’ve already peeked at it, all made up with soft white linen.

To be glamping is a new experience, not exactly an extremely glamorous one but one which I shall store away in my mind while waiting for one of my characters to need a little break like this. Or a protagonist who is full of himself and struts around feeling like top dog because his accommodation is more comfortable than that provided by an old, rather tatty, motorhome opposite, which seems to be occupied by an elderly woman with slightly wild long white hair, who is constantly typing or simply sitting in the passenger seat surveying the scenery and passing campers.

Hang on, that is the description of me when we take Gertie the Van on our hols! How dare he look down on me like that? Does he not know that brewing in that motorhome is not just tea, it is stories, dreams, fantasies, adventures, imaginary worlds he will never inhabit, unless I write about them and he chooses to read the books.

Will this soulless glamping pod, with the fridge sitting under the television, and slightly retro floor-length curtains conjure the same magic for me? Will ideas tumble and images colour and merge into stories untold? 

Who knows? 

My niece, when four years and hearing those two words said ‘Somebody knows.’ She didn’t use a capital S but I do, because that Somebody knows more about me than even I do. 

‘Many, o Lord my God,

Are the wonders you have done.

The things you planned for us

No-one can recount to you

Annie Try is a Christian writer of novels. Her last three books have been stories set around the life of a clinical psychologist and his extraordinary clients. Annie is currently undertaking a rewrite of her fifth novel, which is her second one for young adults.

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