What constitutes camping?

When it comes to camping, I’ve always been a rugged elitist. Rolling out a sleeping bag in the middle of nowhere, now that’s camping. Parking a motor mansion in a campground, cranking up the AC and spending the evening watching TV from a portable satellite dish – that’s no more camping than staying in a Ritz-Carlton is bedding down with the natives.

But now that we own a trailer complete with mattress, refrigerator, microwave and its own AC unit, are we still “camping”? To get an answer, I went to a higher authority – my wife who’s been a camper since she was in diapers.

“Camping is what you do in a campground, not what you sleep in.” she says. “If you go for hikes, ogle the sunset, gaze at the stars and roast s’mores around a campfire, you’re camping. If you don’t interact with nature, you’re not camping. You’re simply bunking in a mobile motel.”

“Honey, it’s 93 degrees outside. So we’d still be camping,” I ask, “if I turned on the AC?”