18 July 2015
Early July scene mid-week along highway M-115 in Cadillac, Michigan at William Mitchell State Park.
To join the others under the trees and walking distance from the two lakes that straddle the isthmus most people buy, borrow, or rent a camping trailer or RV (recreation vehicle). The section reserved for tenters (people sleeping under nylon or canvas) is relatively small and hard to see by comparison to the wheeled, portable living spaces shown here. The convenience of having a familiar place to sleep, cook, and take care of some personal grooming gives campers reason to haul their trailer north from time to time on the weekend or for whole weeks at a time. It is hard to beat the feeling of certainty and security with light, heat, water and electricity all in one place, especially when the outdoors is less than glorious. And yet there is the view that your means will affect your ends; that is, the manner in which you conduct your life affects the kinds of things that are visible or audible in your experience. By analogy and using the "life is a journey" metaphor, the person traveling on foot v. noisy motorbike v. biplane v. jumbo jet will all have different experiences of a place. So too of camping - the more gear that separates you from the elements, the less of those textures and rhythms will you perceive. Thus to live in or a few steps away from a camper which is neatly parked next to other ones is bound to be a different experience to living out of a tent with few tenters nearby.