Kay and I took Appa the Volksbison, our ’85 VW Vanagaon camper, down to Lake Erie this past weekend. On the plus side, I had recently discovered that our camper’s onboard fridge was actually functional. I had ordered a kit to convert the space to extra shelving and storage, but had been procrastinating about taking the fridge out and junking it. However, on our last outing, I was startled to discover that some of the items stored in the fridge space were cold to the touch! Evidently I had it set so that it ran off the battery while the van was in motion, and I realized that the fridge was working. A little tinkering with it this summer, and some YouTube research, taught me how to run it off an external power cord while parked, to get it properly chilled, and then how to get the pilot lit so that it could run on propane once we reached our destination. This meant that we had all the VW’s original systems working: the propane stove, the fridge, and the water tan/sink/tap. Excited, we searched for a destination and settled on Wheatley Provincial Park, down on Lake Erie. Wheatley is not far from Point Pelee, which is the southernmost point in Canada, on a latitude with Northern California.
We made it. Appa is old and slow and somewhat prone to overheating, so I kept a close eye on the temperature gauge, but we made it there and back without much incident. We were blessed with a perfect early fall weekend and a campsite by the water.
If you peer into the side door, you’ll see Kay celebrating our arrival.
Walkway to the beachfront along Lake Erie.
Some of the park’s many denizens. We got up before sunrise on Saturday morning and were treated to the unforgettable sight of stars reflected on the water. I wish I could have captured that in a photo, but some things are best saved for memories. I may never see starlight reflected on water again, but I’ll never forget the sight.
I tried going for my morning run along this beach. It wasn’t my fastest run. In fact, it was like one of those dreams when you’re trying to run away from monsters but caught in quicksand.
Church by the lake.