The very first time I ever went camping was in a pop up. A Jayco, to be exact. I was probably 8 or 9. My family is NOT outdoorsy. We are not campers, hikers or hunters. If we were cavemen, we would die. We can’t build a fire with flint. We don’t cook over open fires. Apparently, we had ancestors who were hardy and could work the land, hunt with cunning skill, etc. Well, those skills fell by the way side. So, to me, that camper was roughing it. But, it was SO much fun. I remember a month spent at the beach, with Dad coming down for long weekends, and a week at the end. Me, my parents, and my cousin all crammed into that tiny camper. Without air conditioning! We thought we were super high class to have a pop up that had a refrigerator instead of an icebox! The campground still sold huge ice blocks to those who had the iceboxes. They did brisk business!
As I grew older, Mom and Dad realized that it was way too close to tent camping for them. Within a year or two, they traded up to bigger and better. Shortly before Dad passed away, he sold their last camper: a gigantic fifth wheel with slide outs galore and an electric fireplace. Far from our humble pop up.
My hubby, Chad, grew up very differently. He’s an outdoors guy. He loves to hike, bike and hang out in nature. Lord knows, we’re the poster children for opposites attract. He grew up tent camping. He met me way after our pop up days, and always teased my parents and I that we were not camping, we were “housing.”
For a few years, we’ve been trying to restore an ancient (and decrepit) travel trailer. It has been a trainwreck, and tons of fun. But, life has a way of changing, and we just don’t have much time for leisure. We realized we were not truly willing to use that time working on a camper that pieces and parts were becoming increasingly difficult to find. So, we decided to find a small camper, a new one.
We kept realizing how crazy heavy campers are. Our tow vehicle is a Jeep Wrangler, so heavy isn’t an option. After searching for a few weeks, we decided to look at pop ups, instead of travel trailers. Well, hey… they’re way easier to tow! Light, short, and compact. And, did I mention that it’s way cheaper to get a pop up than a travel trailer? So, yeah… it’s a pop up.
We were set to get a new one, but they got a trade in. A lady had bought the camper to house visitors in. She used it exactly ONCE. So, basically a new camper that we got for used. Cannot beat that! We also hit at a time they were offering FREE 4 year extended warranties, and since it was freezing cold out there and no one else was buying a camper, I did a bit of haggling. Got us a free air conditioner, too!
So, we had to figure out what to call the camper. I’ve got a serious problem… I have to name inanimate objects. I don’t know why. It’s an illness, really. But, the camper needed a name. I love alliteration, so it had to have that. I realized that pop ups are basically boxes. Little things that actually have quite a lot in them. So, she (and it has to be a girl. She’s small and cute, and is going to have a lot of adorable owls) is… Pandora Popup!
We’re 42 years old and haven’t used a pop up in forever. So, I’m sure there will be stories of epic failure. There will be some awesome trips, too. I’ll keep you updated on both. Have fun following our adventures!