Monday, May 07, 2007

The New Log Cabin

When I was a kid, people went on holidays in cribs (or baches in the North Island). These were often rough and ready places, often built by the not-necessarily proficient owners, and were usually near a beach or a river. There would invariably be bunks, and more people than room, but we’d all squash in together and have a great time. When we left, the floor would be covered in sand from endless trips to the beach, and the tattered paperbacks that lived in the crib all year round would have been read over again.
Cribs/baches these days have gone to the other extreme. Many of them are purpose-built at great expense and some of them rival the owners’ houses in town. When you have people on tv talking about the way they planned out their ‘crib’ with an architect (an architect?!) and ensured it faced the sun and was open to the view and each child had his own room (which comes fully-equipped with everything we didn’t have on our holidays) you have to wonder what sort of vacation takes place in these buildings. To make them cost-effective, you’d need to live in them half the year round.
The same thing is obviously taking place in the States. The old log cabin of yore, which was put together as best the builder knew how, is now replaced by extravaganza luxury log cabins. Here’s what the people on the Pigeon Forge cabin rental site tell us is available in their cabins: floor to ceiling stone stacked fireplace and a fully equipped kitchen. In the master bedroom there's not only a king-sized bed, but a bedside fireplace, a Jacuzzi in the corner, and a separate bathroom with a walk-in shower. A separate bathroom! We used to wash in a tub – or outside under the tank. And the toilet was way down the back of the section in a little hut that housed the famous – and smelly - long-drop. Ah, them were the days!

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