Into the Great Wide Open

Post by T.M.

Do you remember that episode of Sex and the City when Carrie agrees to go with Aidan to his cabin in the woods? It’s one of my favourites, perhaps because I love an occasional change of scenery – in TV shows and in life. Everyone knows that Sex and the City was as much about fashion than anything else and that had to be represented in an episode set almost entirely in the middle of nowhere.

Another reason why it sticks in my mind is that Carrie knew that nobody of note would see her or judge her on what she wore in that particular area of the  country and that Aidan wouldn’t care, but she made an effort anyway.


My inner Carrie started nagging at me on Saturday when I packed for a one night camping trip. Like Ms. Bradshaw, I had to be convinced by my boyfriend to leave the city – Withnail & I was showing in Fitzwilliam Sq last night and it was Longitude this weekend after all. But away we went to the glorious Slieve Bloom mountains in Counties Laois and Offaly. It was quite a struggle setting up camp. especially since we had to hop over pretty unstable stepping stones to get to our spot,  given that this is what I wore:

 2013-07-20-21-23-23-1 7

2013-07-20-21-22-27-1 7

I joke, I joke. Although I did lug those shoes around with me just to take those pictures!

No, the Carrie on my shoulder did try to get me to pack enough changes of clothes to allow for any possible situation but my sensible side prevailed. It’s not very exciting and I wouldn’t usually say this but wear the most comfortable clothes you have and forego style for once when on a camping trip. It’s just not worth bringing cute things that you simply won’t wear. If you are worried about being judged, I’d  urge you even further not to make too much of an effort. Frankly, nice shorts and a crop top look a bit stupid when you are trampling through branches in the drizzle. And let’s not give further  mention to the stains that can so easily occur on such jaunts. This is what I really wore:

Town Mouse Camping Style 3Town Mouse Camping Style 4]

(See how remarkably clean looking those runners are? I’ve had them for three years.)

My point is, there is a time and a place for fashion. THERE, I’ve said it. Now I believe that time and place to be almost everywhere but have a break every so often and don’t feel bad about it. Camping is the perfect excuse. If this post was a style guide for outdoor activities I would say the same thing; dress and pack for comfort and convenience. You need all the space you can muster for picnic supplies! My kind of picnic is verrry heavy…

P.S. It’s underrated as a ‘hiking’ spot but I really recommend the Slieve Bloom mountains. It’s the oldest mountain range in Europe, thus the flattest, but I don’t know why that puts people off. It’s a truly beautiful area. After completing the not arduous at all Glenbarrow looped waterfall walk (the gorgeous waterfall area was full with happy families enjoying the sun) we checked out the Ridge of Capard, walking along handy planks erected there to help people to not get stuck in the bog. On Sunday we strolled around the Brittas (man-made) Lake and drove the cute village drive. I can’t tell you where we camped in case you set the authorities on me (but if you really want to know send an email and I’ll see what I can do!) It’s a shame that this area of the country is sometimes neglected as a beauty spot but it certainly is lovely and you should go. X

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