As a kid, the idea of spending the night in the yard shielded from the elements by nothing but a sheet of colorful nylon was a hoot. So what if the ground was bumpy and damp. We were Daniel Boone. In my tweens and teens, I moved out of the pup tent and into the cabin at summer camp. Real walls, wooden floors, and cool bunk beds made the experience a little less like roughing it and more like a giant, week-long sleepover. I loved it so much I went for three weeks one summer.
Of course, what drew me to the place wasn’t necessarily the sleeping accommodations. I loved everything about it–singing silly songs before meals, bug juice, arts and crafts, horseback riding, hiking, evening rituals, counselor skits, and making new friends.
These days, a “camping” trip for me begins with a call to the nearest Holiday Inn Express. Don’t get me wrong–I love quality family time. I guess my dislike for bugs has grown since I was a kid. I really don’t want to share the bathroom sink or *gasp* concrete stall with a gigantic spider named Harry. I don’t want to fend off mosquitoes at every turn or douse myself in DEET to mask my mosquito magnet pheromones (they seriously can’t get enough of me).
[Sidebar: Do NOT Google bug bites. You're welcome.]
I could probably endure all of that in the name of happy childhood memories for my kids, but then there’s the issue of The GERD. The GERD doesn’t like me to sleep in the comfortable horizontal fashion most humans are accustomed to. No, The GERD likes me to sleep La-Z-Boy style to keep the contents of mah belleh in mah belleh while I dream about delivering a litter of French Bulldog puppies, one of whom came out dressed like an adorable Parisian pup (Yes, I dreamt this last night after poring over Frenchie puppy pics before bed):
My idea of camping:
I guess donning jammy pants and curling up on a super soft Sealy mattress at the store isn’t enough of an adventure for the peeps in Hollyweird. I assume they were the bunch responsible for the newly coined term, glamping. Go here to see where glamping can take you.
This wilderness resort in British Columbia does a wonderful job of blending the great outdoors with the comforts of home, but it would be a bit of a trek for us–just over 3,000 miles to be exact. Maybe I could re-create some of that home comfort and camping combo on our deck. Of course, We live in a fish bowl, and every neighbor would watch us stumble out of the tent bearing bed heads the next day, and we would awaken to the sounds of lawn tractors and air conditioning compressors instead of crickets and pond peepers, but at least we’d be experiencing the great outdoors.
I used to sleep out on our second-story deck as a teen, and enjoyed it very much. We were out of the way of most bugs, and a well-placed trash can paved our way down from the garage roof so we could run all over town half the night. Ah, to be young again.
I guess I could drag the recliner out on the deck for a night of roughing it. That might qualify as camping, right?
What about you–are you a happy camper?