As in: “Tents – nervous headache”. You’ll will need analgesics after putting one up. Nowadays tents put themselves up, postponing the headache until you try to get it back in the bag.

Primus stove

A small stove commonly used in camping, but originally used by ancient Greeks to cook a type of chickpea paste.

Communal toilets

Introduced by Russian revolutionary campers in 1917 because individual cubicles were considered too bourgeois.


After Charles Dickens abolished the use of children as chimney sweeps during the 1812 Overture, there was a surplus of urchins. A Mr Powell from Baden-Baden decided to put them in the countryside in tents left over from the Boer war, where they remained until some of their parents decided they’d like them back. But their whereabouts had been forgotten, so Mr Powell had to help their parents find them. This led to his handy guidebook, Scouting for Boys.


Tents, or wams, where Red Indians would keep their scalps, or wigs.


Tents where Red Indians would drink tea and urinate . Cowboys who went in them were appalled at the stench, hence the name “paleface”. Red Indian tea is virtually indistinguishable from urine, hence the name, “tepee”.

Toasting Your Marshmallows

Most effectively achieved by scouts sitting too near the campfire.

Ging Gang Gooly Gooly Gooly Gooly Wotcha!

What scouts scream when they realise their marshmallows are toasting. This is, in fact, often the first time a scout realises he has marshmallows.


What one does to one’s marshmallows once they have toasted.


Camping is a great way to have a holiday without spending much money, and ideal if you are an escaped convict on the run.

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Not FOR beginners, but BY beginners…