3 minutes reading time (696 words)

A wee tale from the van

20230517_131243 Cubben House

 Sunday evening in my van in checked pyjamas snuggled under my alpkit sleeping bag and my furry blanket. I'm warm under cover, not toasty but it's May so I've not put on the heating.

The top is slightly open bringing in the country air.
It's all quiet except for the gentle bleating of lambs and the occasional owl hoot. I'm hoping there won't be any foxes. If you've never heard the scream of a fox in the middle of the night, it sounds like somebody being murdered.
I'm feeling safe in my van parked in the garden of a holiday home where my friend's family are staying. I've joined them for a day and staying the night because I've had a couple of drinks.
I've had a couple of glasses of wine and I know my cheeks are red. I take a selfie, all cosy with my red cheeks to send to my pal indoors but it won't send because there is no phone signal or WiFi out here. A sudden panic flashes through my mind, what if I need to call for help, but I let it go. We are up a very long dirt track on the side of the fell. I'm tired but not quite ready to sleep, however, I can't get on the Internet so I read a little and eventually drop off to sleep.
It's 4am and I need a wee. Light is starting to seep into the cabin through the skylight and the birds are heralding in the morning with their song. I'm not sure how easy it will be to go back to sleep with this cacophony of song.
My friends had offered to leave open the door so I could sneak in if I was cold or needed the loo but I'd said no problem, and that I had my trusty shrinkable urinal.
I declined a portable toilet in my van because I didn't like the idea of it sloshing about as I'm driving along especially as the van is my only vehicle.
When the bed is pulled out there isn't much room and of course I can't properly stand up in the van so having a wee is precarious.
Needs must, so I delicately place the wee pot underneath me and let go. The flow is very quiet so I am not quite sure whether the wee was in the pot, on the floor or seeping into my pyjama bottoms.
It was a surprisingly large volume as I snapped on the top and placed the pot on the floor and curled back up in bed.
It was only 4.15am so the others were unlikely to be up so after laying for what seemed like ages, I decided to get out of the van and have a wander with my phone camera. I took a photo of the front of the charming old cottage and the neighbouring barn peeping over the top of the gorse with Muncaster fell in the background. The pink and orange rhododendrons were coming into full bloom illuminated by the sun coming up over the fell.
I spotted a squirrel but I was too slow to catch it on camera, or rather he was too quick, darting up the trunk of a tree beside the stream. A pheasant caught sight of me and started to strut quickly across the grass, upright and stiff with his head bobbing backward and forward.
As I listened to the gentle trickle of the stream, I felt the need to wee again. Climbing into the van I tried to stretch out the urinal to elongate it and make room for another wee but it wouldn't budge with the top on. I opened the top but I couldn't stretch it with the contents sloshing about and threatening to shoot out the top. I was caught in a quandary and it exacerbated the urgency. I managed to decant the wee into a pop bottle before filling up the urinal again, with another surprisingly large amount.
When the cottage occupants finally woke up they found me on the doorstop with a smile on my face and my unusual 'bring a bottles'.
Trains, lanes and Jellyfish domains
Painting Houses with St Begh's School


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Thursday, 22 February 2024

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