My first “Tin Can” Trailer experience was in a truck camper in the late 60’s. We were rightfully proud of our shiny new over-the-cab rig and drove it to our family reunion on the North Shore of Lake Superior.
Everyone had a tour of our camper in small groups of two or three, ours being the first such modern camper in the entire family of over 120 people. My Brother, Sister & I were assigned the upper bed over the cab and Mom and Dad took the dinette/bed.
Since it was cold & damp that weekend, we entertained a lot, upwards of a dozen folks crammed in at any one time to take advantage of the small coleman furnace. My uncle had brought a “City Girl”, new to camping, who had decided that she would be in charge of the morning coffee and commandeered our camper as her kitchen. We were asked to leave as she prepared her secret concoction, gathering around the bonfire for warmth as we awaited her special morning brew.
After half an hour we began to get restless, what could be taking so long? My Uncle gave it another fifteen minutes and then timidly knocked at the door and inquired as to how it was going. The young, brightly dressed, bouncy young lady chirped out the door, “It’s not done yet!” and slammed the door.
After another bone chilling half an hour, my Uncle inquired again, this time asking when the coffee would be done. “Everyone knows the coffee isn’t done until it stops perking!” was her quick reply. Obviously she was used to an electric percolator.
My mother just sighed, grabbed our gallon sized camp pot, filled it with water and threw in a double handful of grounds and set it on the open fire. Soon we had good camp coffee the old fashioned way.
My Uncle delicately explained the open fire coffee making process to his lady friend, who was so embarrassed she refused to come out of the camper for the rest of the day, refused to let anyone in and left under cover of darkness that night.
We stayed in my Aunts room tent ’til the coast cleared. My Uncle never brought another date camping ever again.
For many years whenever we would take turns dressing in the camper and were taking a bit long my Mother would always shout, “Is the coffee done yet?” to hurry us along.
Submitted by Terri Markovich of Hovland, MN as a part of the RV Centennial Celebration “Share Your Favorite RV Memory” contest.
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