The 10 caravanning commandments
Is thou sinner or saint whilst thou is caravanning?
In the beginning, thy ancestors ventured into the great unknown, in their Kingswoods with their Viscount caravans in tow, and they explored this vast land. They lived by the great unspoken law and did so in harmony and with respect for each other. They spawned a great populous of nomads whose numbers grew rapidly over the years and, sadly, so did their impatience for their fellow travellers.
Today, their descendants have fallen from grace and they commit many sins, making the holiday experience ungodly for those around them. My children, I write these 10 caravanning commandments to you so thou may live self-controlled and virtuous lives in the present caravanning age. Go forth and spread the word.
1. Thou shall use the dump point at all times
The caravanning gods have bestowed upon the country a network of wondrously clean and functional dump points in many places. Here thou can empty thy toilet cassette of its vileness and excrement without befouling the earth or thy neighbour’s campsite. To do otherwise would be to risk unleashing a plague upon the land or a heavy fine from thy local council.
2. Thou shall respect the peace and tranquillity of the campsite
Blessed are the peacemakers, those who do not play their foul, devil-worshipping, hip hop music so loudly for the multitudes to hear. Surely no one shares their love of Eminem…! Let not your generator be a disturbance to thy neighbours. If thou must use a generator, let it be placed far into the bush with the exhaust facing away from others so as not to cause your neighbours unnecessary disturbance. And aspire to live silently after the quiet-time hour has passed. To disobey this commandment would be to risk an arse-kicking of biblical proportions.
3. Thou shall respect thy neighbour’s personal space
On the eighth day, God created Australia, a wide brown land of sweeping plains and vast horizons with plenty of room to share. There really is no need to park so close to thy neighbour that thy roof-mounted satellite dish casts a shadow across his solar panels.
When at the caravan park, ensure thy guy ropes, slide-outs and awning extensions do not encroach beyond the great boundary between sites. To do so would risk incurring the wrath of the park manager, or worse, thy neighbour’s wife. Yea, though thou may walk through the shadow of Uluru in the height of summer and survive, you’ll wish you’d taken the foot path provided if you walk through my campsite uninvited. And if thou trip over my power cord whilst my wife is watching the last episode of Married at First Sight, heaven knows no fury like her vengeance.
4. Thou shall not allow thy grey water to irrigate thy neighbour’s site
It takes far more than frankincense and myrrh to mask the foul stench that emanates from your grey water hose. Ensure it outflows to the drain provided at the caravan park. If free camping, use the grey water tank that has been bestowed upon you or take great steps to ensure the outflow nourishes the parched earth far away from thy neighbour’s campsite.
5. Thou shall not speed
Yea though your V8 with its three-inch exhaust and remapped ECU may make a thunderous sound that brings joy to all who hear it, the caravan park is not thy racetrack. The only blood stains that should be upon thy bull bar should be from driving through the great locust plagues and not from bowling over the children of thy neighbours. Learn to read the speed signs and obey them.
6. Thou shall not covet thy neighbour’s possessions
Be not envious of thy neighbour just because he was able to afford the top-of-the-range Honda generator and thou could not. For when a man submits to jealousy and selfish ambition, the wrath of the law will soon follow. Even if you only desire to take his expensive Hoselink tap fittings, theft is theft no matter the value. And to the evil spawn of Satan who took my expensive barbecue cleaning brush from my tunnel boot three weeks ago, may the fleas of a thousand camels take residence in your armpits.
7. Thou shall keep thy dog on a lead at all times
Lest though your dog of many breeds may behave and be friendly when he is with you, when he casts his gaze upon my fluffy white pedigree, he may become territorial and turn into a hound from hell. If he is restrained he will cause little harm.
The unrestrained dog will also deposit many turds that may lie in the path of thy neighbour. Suffer unto him when he makes his way to the toilet in the middle of the night and fills his toes with thou dog’s lawn log. Justified is his vengeance.
8. Thou shall not loudly curse obscenities
Yea we all come from different walks of life, and though you may curse better than a Sydney truck driver, not all thy neighbours will appreciate the colour of thy tongue or the sharpness of thy wit. Be respectful of the purity of thy elders and the innocence of children’s ears. Although, if thou stubs thy toe on thy neighbour’s misplaced tent peg, your obscenities may be forgiven.
9. Thou shall clean up after thy bodily function mishaps
Lest the happy hour of the night before may have descended into a scene more befitting the biblical cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, thou will pay for thy sins the next morning, most likely in the amenities block. This much is prophesied, however, be mindful of your neighbours with whom you share these facilities, for they wish not to experience the vileness of thy post-festive excretions. After all, cleanliness is next to Godliness.
10. Thou shall honour the caravan park managers above all others
Yea, you may drive all day and battle head winds, angry truck drivers and biblical fuel consumption, but remember to be respectful to the caravan park manager upon your arrival. For the park is their kingdom, theirs is the power to give you a large site and the glory to determine who thy neighbours may be, now and for the rest of thy holiday … amen.