Digital detoxes are the new It thing in travel.
People fly all over the world now just to get away from life as we know it, give their scrolling finger a break and generally decompress. Poor burned out Silicone Valley millionaires now all flock to a special (eye wateringly expensive) “tech-free” retreat, desperate to disconnect.
Most things will start working again if you unplug them for a while, including you.
But you needn’t fly half way around the world to find yourself.
Just go home to mother.
In a little clearing in the middle of the woods, not too far outside of London, hides my favourite electricity-free retreat.
No lights, no wifi, no cell signal, just you the trees and the breeze.
I do ofcourse mean none other than Wriggly Tin.
A beautiful handful of vintage shepherd’s huts, painstakingly renovated and cared for by the lovely Alex.
I’ve been visiting (and writing about them) for years, but incase you’re new… it’s a place to get back to nature for people who don’t want to set up a tent in the rain or lug any gear up a mountain.
Wilderness for domestic types, who appreciate a nice cup of tea.
And a proper bed, with crisp white sheets to snuggle into after dark.
It’s a place for walks.
Somewhere to read books or a Sunday reading the papers from front to back.
You can chat around the campfire listening to the owls come out and watching the stars twinkle into life.
Wrap up in wooly jumpers and each other’s arms.
And make something of a ceremony of my favourite part… breakfast!
Alex delivers a basket of local goodies sourced from nearby farms, and it’s your job to cook it all up.
You tumble out of bed in the morning, set the indoor stove going (to warm both you and water for the first cuppa of the day) before setting light to the fire outside for breakfast.
My husband, The Bump and I stayed in one Tin with Mr Custard to keep us warm.
While my parents stayed in another across the meadow, with their own fearsome companions.
Who funnily enough only had eyes for me come breakfast time.
With the fire crackling and sausages sizzling, I set about prepping the rest of the feast.
In my opinion, pan fried sausages (especially those done over an open flame) should always be finished in cider or apple juice.
It makes them incredibly juicy, with a beautiful sticky glaze.
Alongside the bangers I fried bacon, sliced mushrooms in a bath of butter, and fried eggs.
All helped along beautifully by the climbing flames and aromatic woodsmoke from below.
Cooking on an open fire requires a little bit of juggling and a careful eye on what’s going on.
But feels so much more rewarding than anything we do at home.
We serve everything family style.
And by the time you sit down to tuck in, everyone’s ravenous.
Hunger is the best sauce, and if you ask me there’s no better tasting breakfast in the world.
That tenth cup of tea slips down pretty nicely too!
When every pan has been carefully wiped clean with the last of the bread, every morsel has been enjoyed, you’re left with the rest of the day to enjoy the wilderness.
…this rather tame and comfortable take on wilderness!
Hidden far away from the real world and its many distractions.
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