Tuesday, November 8, 2011

the camper story, part 1

So, my boss, you see, had a tiny, old, beat-up, ugly camper.  It used to sit behind the barn.  Then it sat out front of the house, with a sign in one of its little window advertising its availability.  This sign managed to attract the attention of exactly one interested party, but in the end, no one was interested enough to fork over cash and haul the thing away.  So it moved back to the barn, and sat, forlornly baking in the sun and leaking in the rain.

Then I had a bright idea.

When one day I tucked into the conversation something about me possibly buying the camper, my boss hemmed and hawed just a little bit, then informed me that I could have it for free if I really wanted it.  But it would need work, he assured me, to get it water-tight and livable.  In fact, at every subsequent mention of the camper, my boss would try to assure me that I really wouldn't want it once I looked inside.  I persisted.  And finally, on my way home from the office one day, I stopped by the barn and took a look inside the camper.

The prevalent water damage, previous make-do fixes, and general age-related degeneration did not deter me.  I knew that behind, around, or through all those issues, a delightful little mobile living space is hiding.  And the more I surf Pinterest, the National Serro Scotty Organization website, and the web in general for rebuild photos and other inspiration, the more excited I get.  Who cares if I've never built anything in my life!  Who cares if I don't own one power tool!  Who cares if I have no real idea how to upholster, wire, plumb, or panel!  I have always been one to enthuse about learning when I have a purpose for it.

My Serro Scotty Sportsman Gaucho, which I finally measured today at 10 miniscule feet in length, is now sitting in my parents' sideyard.  Realistically, the more I investigate, the more convinced I am that this is going to be a complete re-build project.  As in, from the frame up.  I don't anticipate a religious adherence to the original design, at least not in specifics.  But thankfully, should I need to cut new walls and build new fixtures, I should be able to use the current (if rotted) pieces as a guide.  I am a long way from picking out paint or even configuring storage space, but those are the fun things to consider.  Life in sixty square feet... what an adventure!
Consider this the "before" before post.  Here are some photos of the Scotty in its current state.  Expect in-process pictures to follow... although it may be several months before I am able to make that happen.

What has happened to me?  In a matter of days I have developed an addiction to web-surfing for camper rebuild stories, which keeps me up into the night.  I anticipate scouring online listings for cheap replacement parts, creeping construction sites for free building supplies, and learning to man a table saw.  I even decided today that I probably ought to at least buy my own drill.

I repeat: What has happened to me?  If you figure it out, please let me know.

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