We prefer pinot grigio and brie

  I read with understanding and dismay the essay by Evelyn Spence on the RV blight (HCN, 10/15/07). I hope she will soften her point of view in due time ...

I'm an elderly rancher/horse dealer/painter, with two RVs at present, both of which she forgot to mention: "Chinook" and "Airstream." Music to my ears. Named some polo ponies after them.

Long ago, when I was Evelyn's age, whatever that may be, I didn't usually bother with even the tent. A horse, a sleeping bag, peanut butter and jelly with a side of Hershey bars - so I'm probably not a wimp, though over the decades I have ... softened.

Not being a fan of motels, I tried tenting a year ago, but sleep eluded me. Was it the arthritis, the new knees, the new hip? As for the macaroni and cheese dinners, I gained a pound reading the label.

Why RVs? Not only do I usually pull a couple of horses, but I also have a complete painting studio, a few musical instruments, radio, laptop, library of Eastern thought, all of Billy Collins' published poetry, and maps of the Forest Service and BLM land in the areas I'm going to. Also pills and a cane - just in case.

Like most of the RVers I see, I close my gas-gobbling old ranch house ($600 per month) for six months, therefore actually saving fossil fuel. Check www.publiclands.org - you need not use an RV campground - there are millions of acres for tents and sleeping bags. Go find maps, avoid bears, enjoy solitude. As you reach your - ah - golden years, feel free to change your mind and just enjoy being inches from a thunderstorm or sunrise, having a soft bed, hot water, old dogs, music - and if not macaroni and cheese, a decent red wine, perhaps Camembert and pears.

Trudi Peet
Carbondale, Colorado