What could be better on a dull January afternoon than a quick trip to the local Caravan Shop?
Outside it’s cold and damp but I still can’t resist a quick shufty in and out of some vans on the forecourt. New vans, old vans, I like to look, I can’t help myself.
A Swift Basecamp catches my eye. Quirky little things from the outside and quite pleasing on the eye. With the door at the back of the caravan open I have to have a nosey inside.
Interestingly plain with a very sparse appearance on the inside. The blacks and greys of the upholstery and units give it a very modern but cold feel. Strong canvas baskets with zip down fronts create a very different storage solution alongside the traditional cupboards. It’s a 2 berth and the bed looks like it would be enormous when made up. The seats sit atop metal frames so no under seat storage in this baby. Whilst being very spacious, it’s not for me. It has a too modern and minimalist feel to it. I’d have to fluff it up a bit with cushions and throws and add a splash of colour with a brightly coloured kettle and matching tea, coffee and sugar pots. On one of our trips to a caravan shop for bits and bobs we actually bought a caravan! Not today. Nothing here to entice me.
Heading into the warmth of the accessory shop I’m hit by the smell. They all smell the same. A smell I love. A mixture of new fabric and… err… toilet chemicals. A smell reminiscent of caravans, holidays and fun times. An Aladdin’s cave with bits and pieces squirrelled away in every nook and cranny. Every tent peg imaginable, valves, vents, peg pullers, guy ropes, caravan loo roll, fire buckets, everything you could possibly want and more. Aqua rolls and wastemasters, chairs and caravan steps it’s all here.
The Boss wanders over to the bits and pieces section. Carefully bagged screws, washers, valves, hinges, taps, LED strips and other bits and bobs that interest the male species. It’s the same as a trip to B&Q. He can spend ages in aisles like that, I inevitably wander off in search of gadgets and pretty things. Colour coordinated accessories, awnings, miniature caravan shaped bird boxes, collapsible pans and kettles. You name it, they’ve got it. I could spend hours browsing.
I don’t need anything, not really, somehow a butter dish catches my eye and finds it’s way to the checkout. I never leave empty handed. Here he comes, clutching a hand full of tent pegs, guy ropes and a wheel arch cover. Muttering phrases like, ‘Do you really need that?’ ‘How heavy is it?’ The check out is loaded with last minute things to tempt you before you shove your plastic into the machine. Caravan key rings, heavily reduced calendars, Puriclean and an array of caravanning books. We resist, numbers crunched on the keypad, goodies bundled into the obligatory bag for life. Still looking as we leave, or should I say as he drags me out, anything new on the Cadac stand that we may have missed?