Be it beach, forest, treetops, or woods, I finally found the perfect “tent” for camping in comfort.
When I was a child my family took a couple of weekends a year to drive to the Provincial Parks of Canada. We had a huge 10’ by 12’ canvas tent that probably weighed 60+ pounds. To that my parents added four sleeping bags for the five of us (theirs was a double). We had cots and foam pads to barricade ourselves from the ground to a certain extent. Then there were coolers, a gas stove, a gas lantern, several flashlights (at least one with near dead batteries), a radio, swim suits and towels, and LOTS and LOTS of mosquito repellant.
Each of us kids brought toys and things with which to amuse ourselves during the ride from our Minnesota / Canada border home into the wilds of the midwestern Canadian frontier. For me this was mostly books, a couple more books, and maybe a stack of comic books. My parents never cared what I read, only that I read. And that I did, practically non-stop.
The things I remember most about the trips were the awful “beaches” that the lakes in these parks seemed to have, the middle of the night trips to the outhouse (why did I go use the outhouse??) and my Mom worrying about running into bears along the way, and waking to the smell of coffee, bacon and eggs that my Dad always made in the morning before any of us was up.
He was probably up early because he was tired of the rocks in his back or maybe the sunshine and birds woke him up at the crack of dawn. I know he wasn’t up early to check his e-mail, call in to the office, tweet a couple of friends, or check the stock market on his cell phone. Cell phone? What would that be honey? Remember, this was about 40 years ago. Yes, I’m old as dirt with just as many memories. My parents are as old as dust, but they still smile when they remember these little camping trips, too.
So that brings me full circle. Maybe these little inflatable rooms would not be the ideal camp tent. Especially with their sleep number mattresses, power outlets, etc. I might not even know that I was at a Provincial Park in Canada or on the Cobourg Penninsula in Australia or in Antelope Canyon in Arizona or near Drybeck Farm in Cumbria.
Now that I think about it, maybe the old ways are sometimes still best…