「クリキャン!」 (Kuri Camp!)
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas this St. Patrick’s Day weekend, and not just because it’s still cold outside. Our girls are finally on their Christmas camping trip to the Asagiri Highlands. This place in particular has an up-close view of Mt. Fuji that changes into a red tint when the sun goes down. What makes this and the next episode special though is how everyone is together at last. Chiaki and Aoi have their itinerary planned out with how they’ll go about the day ahead of time, Rin came in for the assist, Nadeshiko brought her enthusiasm and breakfast items with her, Toba-sensei brought bacon and beer, and Ena came with both her collection of expensive camping equipment and her chihuahua Chikuwa. It was great to see everyone in the cast in one place, and it really feels like a great way to cap off such a terrific show.
As everything that’s happened up til now reveled in the tips and techniques for stable camping, this episode aimed its sights on presenting how amazing the food looked. I haven’t had s’mores in a while until this past year, but seeing them being put together and the melty marshmallow fall over had me reminiscing about how great they are by the campfire. One area of interest that I am less versed in is Western-style versions of Japanese food. Aoi’s recommendation from her grandma to have Sukiyaki as a meat dish to share with company inspired her to take on sukiyaki two-ways: your standard method of stewing meat and vegetables together, and an Italian-inspired variant with tomatoes, basil, and stir-fried onions. It’s something I’ve only seen from a Western POV, but I’m curious about how Italian-style Japanese dishes turn out, especially since Aoi was going with the motif further with cheese pasta.
Rin’s moment of reflection at the end of the episode is a good chance to bring back up what makes Yuru Camp so charming. Rin’s burst of happiness from enjoying her time with the other girls calls attention to how great it has been to see her slowly develop overtime. Thinking back to when Rin was too uncomfortable to even consider camping with someone else, it is really something to see how her joy from camping with Nadeshiko had eventually given her an interest in sharing time with everyone else. The anime doesn’t look down on her for being shy, but instead gives her an experience with friends that reveals to her that it’s not so bad to have a little company while you’re camping. I’ll try to refrain until the last episode to gush about the music and visuals again, but it’s something that I’m appreciating more now that the season is almost over. It’ll be devastating to lose Yuru Camp because it’s been so relaxing and amazing, but we’ll have to see how Nadeshiko’s breakfast turns out in the next episode’s continuation of the Christmas camp.