Introduction to tramping
Motto: „We all have a lot of sadness, but we all have a hell of a lot of fun!“ (Ecce Homo Homolka)
Tramping (properly speaking = a way of spending holidays, vacations or weekends off, so that everything I need is on my back in a rucksack and we go through the countryside, visit sights, and where the evening comes, we sleep there = here in the forest, here on a ruin or a sitting) – so I consider tramping the best way of spending holidays, and not only for teenagers. I have travelled a lot in this way after my marriage together with my wife, surprised by the fallacy of the theory that girls are not into tramping (although these trips were characterized by a much higher level of personal hygiene than those of boys). Girls are definitely into tramping – although one has to take into account the different weight of the rucksacks (girls simply pull less or can they?) and their fundamentally different content (meaning the rucksacks)…
However, the story takes place at the very beginning of our travelling era (shortly after our family circumstances started to allow it – around the age of seventeen), when we were learning how to behave properly on a tramp, what to take with us, etc. It was a cruel beginning, which I’d like to share with you, perhaps in the foolish hope that even though social experience is incommunicable (as the experts say, and it’s not worth arguing with them) I will try to describe everything as subjectively as possible (again, despite the experts), because in this way – it seems to me – there will be a transfer of these experiences to the greatest possible extent. Surely you will also recognize that nothing can be done without expert instruction, and so logically neither can a tramp! But I don’t want to play mentor, I would like to describe the development of our mindset leading to freedom of travel and maybe even a bit of personal humanity.
Well, there were four of us (not original, but true, and not in a tank – not to mention a dog or a boat, but on the wanderings, yes, and maybe sometimes it Klapka, Jerome, it did) and we were very lucky to be taken in by an equally old, but experienced, traveller, Patrik K. (he himself is said to have been wandering since he was ten years old, and often by himself – which we didn’t want to believe anymore, because we also knew Patrik’s rather nitpicky mother) The rest of us – Jara Z., Honza L. and me Ondra V. were complete babies, absorbing the advice of an experienced traveller (we knew each other from high school and Honza and I are cousins). Patrik took this task really responsibly. First, he organized several training sessions at his home, where he told us all sorts of tales, even fables, about his travels (one training session was even two days long, so we could get a taste of what it was like to sleep on the floor in the living room – that is, on hard ground). Patrick’s pedantry, however, could not be satisfied and so he preferred to organize a short camp at the cottage in Sazava, but we should devote more space to that, don’t you think?!