The only good thing about us noticing it so early was that it gave us time to do something about it before things got REALLY bad. We discussed all sorts of solutions, from installing vents in the roof (both an expensive and daunting thought at the prospect of cutting holes in the roof of our 'house') to installing a fan in the base of the bed, to provide continuous air circulation and keep the mattress dry. 'What we really need is something with lots of holes in, that we can put between the mattress and the timber, so that we're not sleeping on a solid surface. Something like a plastic pallet', I said wistfully. But where were we going to find one of those? There was nothing for it but to keep racking our brains for ideas and try to come up with a possible solution.
Recycled plastic pallets - just what we need!
Just two days later however, the universe provided. Or to be specific, a very helpful bloke called Dave. 'Bevin says we can have one of these', grinned Gareth, heaving something over to the van and plonking it down in front of the door. Many motorhomers use wooden or plastic pallets, or indeed whatever else they can find that will do the job as a front door step. It stops the ground by the door getting trampled and muddy and prevents dirt and grass from getting traipsed inside. Our wooden step had recently given up the ghost and in its replacement we had just been given a large, square plastic pallet.
Immediately my eyes lit up. 'Are there any more?' I asked, hopefully. 'Yeah, there's a whole stack of them, Dave brought them home from work', Gareth said. Dave was Bevin's son, who when he wasn't working could often be found at the campground, renovating his bus. 'Ohh, you're thinking we could use them on the bed?' Gareth said as I nodded enthusiastically. 'Good idea, I'll go and ask!' I couldn't believe our luck. Here was exactly what we needed, right when we needed it - and for free!
Trimming the pallets to size
We waited impatiently over the next few days for the weather to be fine and dry enough to turf everything out of the van, then Gareth set about measuring and trimming the pallets using a handsaw to make them fit. It took three pallets in the end, which we fitted together like a jigsaw until they covered the entire base of the bed. Then we made up the bed as usual and admired our handiwork. As an added bonus, we now had some handy storage space in the pallet to pop our shoes and other bits and pieces in!
The jigsaw is complete
Our new, very comfortable and totally free bed frame!
'You've gone up in the world!' laughed Bevin, when he saw the finished project. He wasn't wrong there. Having the pallet as an extra layer had elevated us up a good few inches! On the plus side, we were now closer to the insulated ceiling, so as long as we didn't bang our heads getting in and out of bed we would be warmer! I was worried about how comfortable it was going to be, sleeping on top of the plastic pallets but to my surprise we were way comfier than we had ever been sleeping on the timber. I feel like the Princess and the Pea, tucked up snug as a bug in our big bed of layers! Only time will tell as the air gets colder, whether we have finally beaten the demon damp but for now things are looking quite literally, up!