When RV newbies first learn about the concept of camping overnight for free in parking lots, some folks get very excited while others are a little freaked out.
We were both. On our first long distance trip, we were equally excited and freaked out about camping overnight at Walmart and other big box stores. The ability to camp for free just off the highway was part of what made that trip feasible, but we would be exposed to whatever pulled off the road and into the parking lot we were sleeping in.
The first night we camped at a Walmart, neither of us slept comfortably. We kept listening to the cars driving by, expecting a knock on the door, or something.
When the sun finally came up the next morning without incident, we were relieved. A few more Walmart mornings later, the freaked-out feeling was gone and another facet of our truck camping lifestyle had bloomed.
What we didn’t expect is what happened after we arrived home, put the truck camper in winter storage, and attempted to resume normal life. Driving around in our car, we couldn’t stop checking out parking lots for overnight camping.
That’s right, we have Parking Lot Addiction Syndrome, commonly known as P.L.A.S. To this day, it’s not unusual for one of us to say, “This would be a good place to camp overnight” or call out the sign, “No overnight parking” if one was posted. There we are in our car with our truck camper many miles away in storage, but we’re checking out some parking lot to see if we could camp there.
Any time we see a parking lot featuring several of our favorite box stores and restaurants clustered together, we get really excited. For example, if we come across a shopping center with a Panera Bread, Best Buy, Hobby Lobby, and a movie theater, we say, “This would be a great place to camp overnight!” Clearly we have a particularly bad case of P.L.A.S.
This week’s Question of the Week is, “Do you have Parking Lot Addiction Syndrome?” Do you check out parking lots for camping, even when you’re in your car? Or perhaps you’re not comfortable with camping in parking lots and have avoided this nasty infliction. Tell us if you have P.L.A.S., or not.