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Sex & Sewage Scandal Rocks the ’23 International Airstream Rally

Ha ha. Not really. I’m just messing with you. Nothing like that happened at the august proceedings of the 2023 Airstream Club International Rally.


I don’t know a thing about Search Engine Optimization, but nothing says click bait like sex and sewage. The profane and the putrid in one juicy story.


Plus, I mean the potential was there, am I right? 1300 Airstreams, cheek to jowl, all with cozy bed chambers inside, but also connected, below ground, by hundreds of miles of sewer pipe. Add 2600 randy retirees carrying on as they celebrate the fact that they all own the same brand of RV...


I mean that is one saucy cocktail of possibility if I’ve ever seen one.


So, I guess I was a little disappointed.


What took place instead was the Streamers cheerfully attended events, outings, and seminars. The plumbing at the Sweetwater Events Complex labored through it all admirably. And the volunteers (you know who you are) selflessly gave days of their time to make sure we all had a great time. I’ll tell you what, getting over 1300 RVs parked into a space about the size of a football stadium parking lot over the course of just two days is not Operation Overlord, but it ain’t for rookies either. Well done folks!


This was our first rally. It was (as Lori and I like to say when we’re imitating older people, now ironic because we are said old people): “a hoot.”

The opening ceremonies were rife with patriotic and club fervor; and flags – lots and lots of flags. There was a vendor exhibitor tent. Food Trucks. Yoga, pickleball and line-dancing (Lori did a little boot scoot boogie).


There were well-attended seminars full of useful (theirs) and useless (mine) information. A few seminars that I attended:

  • Silicone Spray or WD-40 – Which Lube Do You Use?

  • 8 Easy Insta Pot Hacks for Warming Up Canned Chili

  • Which Air Freshener Works Best After Canned Chili

Again, I’m kidding. The seminars were on weighty matters like lithium batteries, solar power, and flutenator valves; but also basic RV hacks like tricking your spouse into cooking most nights.


I gave a surprisingly well-attended talk on Staying Fit(ish) on the Road. For those who know me, this is resume misrepresentation on the order of if I were to, say, coach high school basketball. Ha ha. Well, maybe not that bad, but I would have been a far more credible presenter for things like:

  • Ten Ways to Turn Your Airstream into a Rolling Bar Car

or

  • These Are Things on My Airstream That I Tried to Fix, but Made Much Worse

But I was worried those topics wouldn’t get past the presentation police, so I had to do the soft-shoe shuffle on the fitness thing instead.


It was great. They put us in the Bison Room which, as everyone knows, if you’re going to play the Sweetwater Events Complex in Rock Springs, you want to be in the Bison. All the legends cut their teeth there. Who can forget Big Bill Suggs at the International Belt Buckle Convention in ’04, or even further back, Candy Sinclair at the ’97 Crock Pot Festival. I know I can’t.


I think we killed. We probably should have taped it for a live album but maybe there are bootleg copies out there? (Btw, that’s a copywrite violation people; but please send it to me anyway, thanks). The gist of our presentation was eat more and exercise less. Counterintuitive sure, but it has worked for us. If I ever get around to it, I’ll record a voice over to my slides and throw it up on the Ramble On Adventure Institute. Time permitting.


Wild Horses Dragged Me Away


But it wasn’t all just shiny aluminum trailer talk at the Rally, we also got outside the gates, once. That day, we drove up to Wild Horse Canyon; 300,000 acres of BLM land high above Rock Springs on White Mountain, and home to one of the West’s wild horse herds. Wild animal siting’s are always a thrill. Still, it’s odd to see a horse, which you can see pretty much anywhere, and think “wow, there they are!” and start madly shooting video and photos. But that’s exactly what we did.

Somehow it doesn’t work the same way with feral cats and I’m a little unclear as to why. With wild dogs, you just fucking run away. But, I digress.


Evenings were mostly spent around the campfire with Vermont friends Marc & Trudy and Pam & Dennis from California. Marc & Trudy own a super cool 1954 Vintage Airstream. We had arranged to arrive at the Rally at the same time as them so we would be parked next to each other. But, due to their exalted status as vintage owners, they were ushered out of the long line in the staging lot and whisked away by special golf cart escort to greener pastures, wisely dropping us like a bad habit and leaving only gravely dust and shattered dreams in their wake for us to choke on.

Sometime, much later, we followed a more pedestrian group of trailers up to Sector W, in the White Mountain zone. I had failed to procure the 30AMP extension cord for the power as instructed by the event organizers. Saving me was next door trailer Mimi from Abita Springs, Louisiana who came through with a loaner. You’re the best Mimi. Who says fences make for better neighbors? (I think it’s a shared sewer connection).


After 5 Nights we could Rally no more. It was time to bid our new and old friends the RV farewell salutation of “We’ll see you down the road.” And boy did we. I mean half the rally seemed to be with us up in Grand Tetons National Park and Yellowstone the following week. Why are you following us?


Next Up: National Parkapalooza



cover photo: courtesy of Cowboy State Daily

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