Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Modern Camping?

Last summer, I determined that if you travel with a satellite dish, you can't call what you do camping. My parents' camper has hookups for a washer and dryer, so I don't think you can call what they do camping either. I felt a little self-righteous about Scamping as being a more pure form of the sport, cooking most of my meals over a fire, not filling the water tanks, or having a bathroom. But that's just ridiculous. I'm typing on my computer, taking a break from a movie through my instant Netflix, I reheated my leftovers in my microwave, and I'm sitting cozy under my electric blanket, waiting for my feet to thaw and waiting for my parents to Skype me if calling my phone doesn't work (it seems to be having issues).

Maybe the difference between camping and traveling isn't one that needs to be made. After all, I'm camped in a campground that's full of big rigs and big-ass fifth wheels, most of which seem to be semi-permanent (which prompted my brother-in-law to ask who vacations, long-term, in Nebraska?)--and though I'm used to being the smallest camper in any given campground, there seems a different line to be drawn here, though I'm not exactly sure what it is. And maybe it doesn't need to be made either.

There's no method of travel (whether that is "camping" or not) that's better or worse than any other. Each type, whether it's Class A, tent, or Embassy Suites, has its own set of purposes and agendas and is based on a certain grouping of priorities. My adopted BG mother, D., always says that her idea of roughing it is a Super 8. (That always makes me laugh.) My mother, when discussing camping with my father before we got our pop-up, refused to sleep on the ground (though I always heard that as she refused to go without her electric blanket). I figure that I'm not going to camp anywhere that doesn't have electricity or a convenient bathroom, so if that's the case, I might as well bring my own electric blanket (nearly freezing to death--or what felt like it-- last summer at Mackinac prompted that necessity). And I just like to have a door I can lock, the absence of canvas that I shouldn't touch if it's raining, and the freedom to go wherever I want, whenever I want (mostly true), and not worry about what I'm leaving behind at the place where my mail will pile up, because I can take the cats and know that even if I'm not parked in a campground in some exciting location, I'm parked in somebody's driveway and still sleeping in my own bed, and that can be just as exciting.

Although I still feel like the satellite dish is cheating.

1 comment:

  1. Great take on a semi-serious question....