The Unreliable Guide To… Taking a Holiday in The Bush
This is not a euphemism for an un-waxed downstairs pash, but rather having a vacation away from it all. We tend to spend our holidays at the beach, on the snow or, if we’re being cultural, in some European capital, but The Unreliable Guide recently left all that behind and spent six weeks on 80 acres of forest in the hills.
We were an hour’s drive from the nearest town. We had no phone signal, no television and minimal wifi. It was amazing, but the bush is not for the fainthearted. We were on high alert for bushfires, power cuts were frequent and the water tank almost ran dry. When the rain came it almost washed away our gravel road, and we ran perilously low on food. Even if Deliveroo extended that far, the lad’s scooter would never have made it.
Despite that, it was wonderful. If you fancy having a go yourself, The Unreliable Guide has some tips and tricks to make sure you get the best of the bush…
Be prepared to exchange nightlife for wildlife
In the bush, the birds wake you before dawn, so by sunset you’ll be rubbing your eyes and thinking about your pillow. That’s okay, because there’s nowhere to go at night. Don’t worry that you’ll find this boring – who needs to pop a pill and go clubbing when you can make your heart race chasing a giant spider around the bedroom? Or a snake out of the outhouse! All manner of beasties inhabit the wilderness, and they are not shy about saying hello. It’s very exciting.
Choose a spot with a view
When you are deep in the middle of nowhere it’s important to still feel connected to the rest of the planet. A long vista of rolling hills is a beautiful thing, plus if you can see the sky you’ll understand the weather. More vitally, you’ll have advanced warning if a bush fire is heading your way.
Meet some country folk
The only place you can be truly alone is the city. People in the country are really friendly. This could be because they haven’t spoken to anyone new in a year, but they will go out of their way to be nice to you. You’ll even find mechanics who can actually fix cars and don’t just suck their teeth whilst eyeing up the thickness of your wallet. This kindness can be very unnerving though, and you may suspect people are trying to induct you into a cult.
…Or Just avoid everyone completely
The Unreliable Guide lives in a unit so we have the pleasure of hearing our neighbours both farting and fornicating, but out in the bush we had no neighbours at all, for miles and miles – no one! This blew our minds. No leaf-blowers, no 4.00am backpacker karaoke, no screaming kids, no barking dogs… nothing. The only thing that might disturb you is the techno drone of a million cicadas. Bliss.
Finally, the next time you find yourself being elbowed out of the way by a yummy mummy in an overrated cafe because her howling toddler’s need for a babycino is way more important than your espresso, consider booking a bush holiday. In the meantime, The Unreliable Guide advises the purchase of some city survival essentials: elbow pads and a set of noise cancelling headphones.