So it begins...
A beautiful sunny morning in BC and my sister has offered to take the kids for a beach day with a sleep over! WHOO HOO! This means a date with my wife! We drive over to her place at noon to drop off the girls. As we drive away from the house I look over to my wife and say, “Honey, for the next hour can you do me a favour and humour me?”. She reluctantly agreed, so I proceeded to drive the 10 minutes to Hazelmere RV park where the BC Airstream club (WBCCI) were having a weekend camping event. As we pull into the park my wife looks at me and says, “Is this an Airstream thing?”. I gently remind her that she agreed to humour me, so rather than answer the question, I just smile. As we near the back of the property we soon see about 30 aluminum trailers in different lengths, years, models, and of course, gloss level. We park and introduce ourselves to the first person we see with name tag, a very nice gentleman named Gene. “ Hi Gene, my name is Moses and I’m thinking about purchasing an Airstream, so I was hoping that by coming here today, some of my questions will get answered by the experts assembled here.”
Five minutes later I’m sitting in Nick an Joanie’s 2005 19 ft Bambi. Joanie is kindly offering us Scotch or coffee. Nick gives my wife the “up and down” once-over and I assume he likes what he is seeing.......”Hey there little lady! Why don’t ya come right on over here and sit on ‘ol Uncle Nicky’s lap!” . Funny guy, and pretty spry for a fella’ in his eighties.
After narrowly escaping Nicky’s advances, Gene graciously rescues us and spends an hour as our tour guide while taking us through various Airstreams, going through pro’s and con’s of each (mostly pro’s), and inserting tidbits of Airstream history along the way.
He was such an amazing host and very passionate about Airstreams, but all his passion and question answering still did not convince my wife that the expense was worth the quality. I could sense she was warming up to the idea of camping in a silver egg, but still needed a bit more of push.... and I new just place.
We hop in the truck, thank Gene for time and exchange phone numbers. I then drive to Langley to our local Airstream dealership. This not like an American dealership that will have 20-80 units on the lot, they unfortunately had only 3. A 16ft Bambi, a 19ft Bambi, and a 25 ft International. my wife suggested that we do our “do diligence” by “keeping an open mind and checking out the other kinds of trailers”. (There is really no point but I love her and will humour her, but I will not be purchasing a vinyl box.) We enter one of the “other” trailers and her first comment is “This is nice”. I smile and nod. Her next comment was “This doesn’t feel like it will last. Look, this is made with particle board.” Again, I respond with another smile. We go into a few more non-Airstream trailers and, judging by her comments, she is trying to convince herself that she’s ok with an “SOB” trailer, but her facial expressions betray her. (Note:”SOB” stands for “Some Other Brand” in the Airstream community.) I know deep down that she is not ok with an “SOB” trailer because she herself is an “SNOB”. No fancy acronym here, just a snob, plain and simple. Always has been, always will be. (Ok, “snob” might be a bit harsh, let’s just say she like the finer things in life.) I feel she is getting closer to becoming a believer, maybe 95% now. I’m on the one yard line.
We make our way from the “SOB’s” to the 16ft Bambi. Her first comment is “This is nice.” (Getting closer.) “Oh, the toilet is actually in the shower. Yuck. This trailer is too small.” (One step backwards.) We head over to the 19ft Bambi. It’s locked, so I seek out the salesman and he let’s us in. “Oh, this one is really nice”, she says. “And look Honey, the toilet and shower are separate”. (Whew. Back on track, she likes it.) The salesman then proceeds to tell her about Airstream, how they have made trailers since the thirties and approx. 60-70% are still on the road; how Airstream trailers result in 30% less gas consumption due to the aerodynamic design, etc, etc. (I see her eyes widen, I am almost there!) “So tell me...” she asks, “Just what IS the comparison between the SOB’s and an Airstream?” He looks at her with a blank, cold stare and simply replies, “There is none.” (BAZINGA! I have achieved lift-off!) I can tell by the look in her eyes that her mind is trying to compute “There is no comparing and Airstream to any other trailer????” I cannot conceal my smile and can barely suppress my laughter.
We thank the salesman and exchange contact info and agree to be in touch. We get back in the truck and we’re not even out of the parking lot before I hear my wife say those three little words every man wants to hear from his spouse....... “You were right.”
Looks like I’m getting me an Airstream!