After deciding that this year we will slow down a little and stay longer in each location an annexe seemed like a good addition to our van. Thus with the Jeep filled with annexe paraphernalia we headed off to the coast for a few days to test the annexe out and make sure that it really performed as we’d hoped.
With over bubbling excitement we started putting up our new annexe for the very first time and well, stuffed it up completely. According to the DVD getting the height of the caravan’s awning is the key to attaching the annexe to it. To explain this to non caravanners, the awning is the sunshade that rolls out from the side of the caravan, the annexe is a series of canvas sides that are attached by sliding them onto the awning mechanism in much the same way as a mainsail is attached to the boom of a yacht. Now for anyone that has sailed, the boom is something that needs to be respected and that respect is usually gained after the boom has cracked one on the head. Woody now has tremendous respect for our awning arm as it somehow managed to whack him smartly across the head and left him with an egg to be proud of.
Now back to the height of the awning. Our only tape measure was the smallest that I’ve ever seen and I’m sure was meant to be for measuring thimbles, totally useless. A quick dash out to find a hardware store and we were back in business. The end result was pretty good, a little saggy in one corner, a bit bowed in the middle and not as streamlined and taut as our neighbour, but good enough for the first go. There was one small hitch though, it took us all afternoon. We better be a tad quicker next time.
Best of all is that it gives us more usable space while acting as a wind break. Has fabulous windows. It provided a great space for a well deserved long lunch with friends next day. And it packs away an awful lot quicker than it goes up.