There is nothing as liberating as not caring if your knees are dirty and it is a form a freedom which is so easily attainable for young an old.
At home I wash my hands and I prepare food with a huge array of clean utensils on various chopping boards. We have devices for all sorts of things; to crush and shave and squeeze and slice, to crack, to grind, to store, to core, for peel or rind.
In the wild I use one fork for everything. I drop it in the earth, sand or grass and I pick it up. I may dab a bit of water on it (if I am not rationing it) but as often as not I end up with some crunchy grains in my food. If I light a fire my hands are sooty as are the sausages. I put things down in the grass, I blow dirt off the bread, I eat with my hands and lick my filthy fingers, I share a spoon and I re-use my cup. I wipe my hands on my dirty top.
In the latter scenario I don’t complain. In fact my 6 year old doesn’t complain that her morning hot chocolate tastes a little of last night's baked beans. She doesn’t complain that she has to wee in the grass or that her shoe is filled with sand.
There is nothing as liberating as not caring if your knees are dirty. It is a taste of freedom.
This weekend I took my daughter out for another microadventure; her second wild camp. On Friday we jumped in the car straight after school and headed up to Lincolnshire to see my parents and then hooked up with Dan for a night on the wild east coast.
Here is what happened:
With thanks to our Adventure Mentor, Dan, for his research.