My latest REI tent has finally arrived! The emerald green color is just gorgeous and goes great with my complexion, plus it’s super light and perfect for backpacking, which I’m definitely going to do. Best of all, I used my member-only coupon, redeemable only between April 26th and 27th. Such a good deal to get 20% off this high-quality tent! It looks impossible to assemble, but that’s the price you pay for having a lightweight backpacking tent. Well, that and $1,200.
I can’t wait to try it out this summer. In the meantime, I’ll put it away with all my other REI tents in the makeshift gear storage space in the corner of my 800 sq ft apartment. The storage seems taken over half of the living room somehow, but totally worth it ‘cause all this awesome outdoor gear was on sale. I barely use my living room anyway, only every night, on weekends and holidays.
So much great stuff in here. Like, take my first tent for example. It’s so practical. Well, not so much practical as spacious. I got it last year during REI’s Memorial Day sale. It was 30% off on May 30th. I couldn’t resist. And at the time, I really wanted to get into camping, but the issue was–I really hate camping–it’s cramped, always wet and uncomfortable, and I’m not into crawling.
But when I saw the 10-person tent with a 72’ ceiling that practically assembles itself, I was sold. It’s even got a specific hole for an extension cord so I can plug in my hair dryer. I mean, if there were any tent that could convert my extreme aversion to camping, it would be this tent–it’s almost as big as my apartment. Plus, it’s a beautiful shade of burnt orange and matches the nightie I planned to wear camping.
Then, of course, I needed to buy all the stuff that goes inside the tent. It’s a good thing that REI was having its annual 4th of July sale. You wouldn’t believe how much stuff you need to sleep in the woods!
I was so excited to go camping in my new 10-person tent but somehow, the summer got away from me. It was either too hot or too cold or too rainy or too humid or too buggy or I had a wedding to go to. Plus, that tent turned out to be kinda enormous and didn’t fit into my friend’s compact car.
Over Labor Day, I noticed that REI had a 6-person tent on sale that was 68’ tall. I could still do jumping jacks and most of my cardio in it, but it packed up into a small size of an airplane carry-on. I thought, you know, that’s much more practical than a tent the size of a human body that takes up four seats on the subway. Plus, I could fly somewhere and have a camping adventure in another state!
When REI emailed me a coupon for an additional 10% off because I’m such a loyal customer, it only made sense to buy it. I couldn’t wait to try out my new 6-person tent that Fall! But then I got pretty busy and joined a monthly book club, so I didn’t fly anywhere to go camping. But I’m very glad I bought the tent, it was such a good deal and it’s this great stormy blue color that matches my eyes perfectly when I am angry.
And now, I have my new backpacking tent just in time for the backpacking season! It’s very minimalist and I can’t figure out how to assemble it, but I’m sure it’ll come to me on the spot when I’m backpacking and being “one” with nature. I doubt it’ll be able to fit the two gaming chairs, the king-size inflatable mattress, and my cashmere blanket like in the other tents, but I probably wouldn’t bring them backpacking anyway.
I still don’t know what backpacking is exactly, I think there’s some walking involved, but I do know that my other tents are definitely too big for it. I needed this small lightweight tent specifically for backpacking so it would fit into my backpack.
All I need now is a backpack.
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Viktoria is a Boston-based writer of humor and children’s books. You can find her work in Weekly Humorist, McSweeney’s, Points in Case, The Belladonna, and Robot Butt, or schedule a private reading of select pages of her 3rd-grade diary.