My parents’ first camping trip was in the summer of 1979. They borrowed a small pop-up camper from a friend and spent their very first night camping at Noccalula Falls Campground in Alabama. My dad was a natural born handy man. He could make it, fix it, or rig it. Camping would be right up his alley.
My husband, five-year-old son, one-year-old daughter, and I were staying the night in a near-by motel. However, we joined them at the campground, and the baby and I stayed at the camper with my mother to help her get set up and take in the camping atmosphere. My husband and son went with my dad to the camp store for supplies. It wasn’t long before my son managed to open the freezer door and released ice all over the floor. Once that was picked up, paid for, and apologized for, they proceeded back to the car where it was discovered that my son had previously locked the doors with the keys inside. At this point, no one was amused and patience was wearing thin. However, things were progressing much smoother back at the campsite.
After a nice afternoon visit in the fresh air and our first camp meal, we proceeded back to the motel, leaving my parents to enjoy the rest of their evening. After all of the excitement that my son had caused earlier, they were looking forward to their very first quiet and peaceful night in a camper, sans all of the commotion.
Sometime before dawn, in the black of the night, my mother needed to go to the bathroom. She didn’t want to go to the bath house at that hour, so she took the flash light and thought she would discreetly go outside behind the camper. She lowered her under garments and squatted. Consequently, she had failed to notice in the day light that they were camped on a small hill. So in the light of the silvery moon, Mom succumbed to gravity. How far she travelled, no one will ever know because it was a year before she would admit it. I have a vivid imagination though, and I can just see her, straddled as it were, with the beam of the flash light making circles in the dark on a warm summer night in 1979.
My parents are both deceased now, but they enjoyed many years of camping. After this initial experience, they bought a used and then a new travel trailer. My husband and I fell in love with camping, as well and are on our second motor home.
Submitted by Alice Talley of Folsom, LA as a part of the RV Centennial Celebration “Share Your Favorite RV Memory” contest.
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