We are 16-year residents of Williamsburg, Virginia a fabulous town that is home to Colonial Williamsburg, The College of William and Mary, Busch Gardens Europe, one hour from the Virginia Beach ocean front and only 2.5 hours from DC! We love it here! Mike is a fleet mechanic, college instructor and part-time maintenance worker at Anheuser Busch/InBev (not much camping time) and Peggy is the Permitting Manager for The Virginia Racing Commission at Colonial Down Race Track. We have 4 children all grown mostly-one still at home going to college, Gemma, who will transfer to William and Mary in the Fall.
We love our little camper! She called out to us from the for-sale lot on a military base over 12 years ago. We got her in exchange for a Suzuki motorcycle! A 1961 Layton, she is 10 ft. from tongue to bumper. The previous owners told us they bought her from a woman and her 3-yr-old child who was living in it in Virginia Beach. She had an air-conditioner stuck to one of her window! They gave her a superficial fix-up and camped in it very little. Mike has re-wired it, relocated the air-conditioner under the bed, and installed a radio/CD player. We have repainted and decorated twice now. Her most recent reincarnation is as a “Red, White and Blue Cottage Farmhouse” that makes me smile every time I look at her!
It is a grown-up girl's little playhouse that travels to America's back yards. I love mine because it is small, which makes it easy to clean, easy to decorate, easy to tow, forces me to be organized and it reminds me of all the great times I had camping with my folks from the time I was 10-years-old.I remember visiting Elkhart with my mom and dad. We didn't live far from Elkhart and we would often take a ride just to look at trailers at the factories. My mom and I could not leave until we went into the smallest of the small trailers and exclaim “How cute!”. The trailer we camped in was 19 ft., which is about half the size of the 2009 Heartland Fiver we own in addition to the Layton. I often think of my parents when I camp and especially when we are out in the Layton. We had so much fun without TV, cell phones, computers or video games.
I love everybody else's trailers too because they are all unique; the old ones have a style that can't be found in new ones. I always say that my obsession with antiques and collectibles is just my way of buying back my childhood!
We were at the Rally in Dearborn in 1999. We worked on the trailer (upholstery, wiring, painting) for 2 weeks every night, late into the night. When we left from Virginia we had to drive through the night, over the mountains, towing with our 1989 Dodge minivan. It was a long trip!
Everyone we knew in Virginia thought we were crazy to want an old trailer. Finding TCT was such a relief! We are amazed and delighted to see how well the club has done since then.
Since 1999 we brought up 5 kids, lost one to an automobile accident in 2008, and all along the Layton was in the driveway, getting necessary repairs and upgrades. We camped in her pretty regularly, but couldn't make it all the way to Michigan or Florida since 1999-jobs, repairs or lack of money getting in our way.
It has always been my intention since we first joined TCT in 1999 to organize a rally in Williamsburg, and now I have!
A couple of Happy Campers, Peggy and Mike