Friday, December 15, 2006

Taking your children reenacting

'Give them an adventure they'll never forget' is usually the tag line to some DVD or video game but what about trying something more real...
Yesterday we had one of those conversations about whether our children enjoyed going off and doing reenactment and I think all of them would say on the whole it was a useful experience, especially when young. Camping and having open fires to cook on, meeting all sorts of eccentric individuals all make for a pretty happy diversion especially if there are others of their age group around to share it with. I found the English Civil War Society pretty child-friendly, but most societies are - but find out if they allow camp fires. This is the heart of period camping and without it it's not much fun. Probably the thing my son enjoyed most was chopping wood, keeping the fire going and this is after all essential growing-up stuff for kids of both genders. It can be rough and ready but you do finish up appreciating the modern comforts when you get back. In short, it is a useful thing to get some good basic hard campaigning - facing powder and shot - alright not that but facing the British weather into them in their formative years. You don't need a Dangerous Book for Boys or anything wussy like that - if you want to bring your kids up tough enough to enjoy themselves when it's raining or be able to cook on an open fire - or unselfconscious in funny outfits - take 'em reenacting - but don't leave it too late or they will sulk.