Now if you're one of those people who enjoys matching up against the great outdoors, then more power to you. I'm actually quite curious as to what it is that excites people about roughing it. I assume it's something I'm missing, as I know far too many very intelligent people who love camping for it to be a misunderstanding on their part. So even though in our family "camp" is a four letter word (ummm...actually I guess it is in everybody's family), when friends of ours invited us to come spend the day at their campsite, we decided to go check it out. Here's what I learned:
Trailers - Apparently, it's still considered camping if you bring one of these babies with you. It looks more comfortable than a tent, but I'm a little worried about the sleeping situation. Maybe I've been watching too much Flintstones, but it seems to me that if I climbed into the bed on the right hand side of the trailer, the left side would shoot up in the air and the whole trailer would be on end. It's a sacrifice I'd be happy to make for some Brontosaurus ribs, but not just to catch some zzz's.
Bugs - I suppose that bugs are a part of every outdoor activity, but they always seem that little bit bigger and more aggressive at campgrounds. It could have something to do with the aforementioned people who haven't found the showers yet.
Swimming - This seems to be the main draw of the campground. I'll admit that it was pretty nice to be able to take a short walk and jump in the lake to go for a swim. If only hotels could find a way to capture a body of water within a confined space so that people could enjoy sitting around the edge while catching some sun. If they ever figure out how to do that, there'd be no reason for campgrounds to exist anymore.
Cost - I had no idea how much it cost to stay at a campground like this. I equate camping with free, but since nothing is free in this world, the correct price is $31 per night. That seems like a fair price for a place to lay your head, although, on a completely unrelated note, I just booked a night at a nice hotel in Las Vegas next week for $23. Just saying.
I tease the campers, but the truth is we had a really good time today. It was fun to be able to sit and visit while the kids had things to entertain themselves. It also didn't hurt that every time we turned around we ran into somebody else that we knew. Essentially it was a giant social gathering of people sleeping outdoors, 20 minutes from their homes. It made for an enjoyable afternoon, but the two hours that we spent at the campgrounds were about perfect for us. The thought of actually sleeping at a campground left me clinging to the immortal words of Mr. Dave Barry - "Camping: nature's way of promoting the motel industry."