During my first month here in Germany, while I was looking for somewhere to live, I lived in a tent that was pitched on the banks of the Regnitz river.
It wasn't an ideal situation but it was much better than sleeping at the barracks with Josh and having to get up at 4am every morning. The army doesn't recognise unmarried couples and so I would have to leave for 5am and then spend 2-3 hours wandering around with nowhere to go until cafes opened. The campsite was a much better option.
Actually it was really quite nice.
The weather was good and I'd actually missed living outside.
Yes that's right, I'd actually missed living outside. There is so much about living outside that I love. I love waking up all snug in my sleeping bag, the air cool around my face and taking in a breath of really nice fresh air. I love the little green lights of fireflies settling on my tent at night just as I am going to sleep and I love sitting out(obviously covered in DEET) as darkness falls. Solid walls, while I wouldn't ever want to forgo them in winter shelter us from so much. Most of all a feeling of just being a part of it all.
Nothing compares to being in a tent during a really huge thunderstorm.
It exhilarates and yet calms all at the same time.
The only downside to living in a tent that I can think of is the lack of security and feeling of being exposed.
One night I woke to hear footsteps outside my tent. You learn to sleep light in a tent, especially during high season on a campsite because you just never know who is knocking about and torches make really good clubs. Quietly I reached for the torch, trying not to give away the fact that I was awake so as not to lose the advantage of surprise should anything untoward happen and that's when I saw it.
Unbelievably there was a girl stood in the middle of my tent. She was dressed in clothing from the 20s/30s and dripping wet. I didn't see her head. My tent is only a dome tent and she was too tall. One can only assume that her head was sticking out of the top if there at all!
At that point I did the only thing I could be bothered to do. I swore, turned over, did my best to ignore her and tried to go back to sleep despite the constant feeling of someone walking over my grave.
Eventually she went and I went back to sleep wondering if I could shift my pitch from the riverside to under the nice oak tree further inland.