Couple takes to open road with vintage trailer
Standing in the doorway of a small, sea-foam green travel trailer, Jill Hamm had a look of happiness and deep contentment.
Hamm looked out of her modern-retro travel trailer — a reissued replica of a 1961 Shasta — at the rolling waves crashing on a Galveston beach and closed her eyes as the cool breeze hit her face.
The trailer was a birthday gift from her husband, John. They’ve made it a personal traveling oasis on adventures across the country.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Jill Hamm said. “It’s really comfortable — we really enjoy it.”
The Hamms, who live in Bayou Vista, haven’t had their trailer for long. But they’ve already made a few trips to Surfside Beach in Brazoria County, North Carolina and to Galveston’s seawall when taking breaks from their law enforcement careers.
John Hamm is the police chief in Hitchcock, and Jill Hamm is a lieutenant for College of the Mainland’s police force.
The back window of the trailer is adorned with bumper stickers from trips the Hamms already have taken, and they hope to add more, they said.
They have plans someday soon to take a trip to Garner State Park in Central Texas and eventually to the Grand Canyon. Florida and California also are possible destinations for the couple.
Their travel trailer is nearly an exact replica of the 1961 Shasta Airflyte, complete with the legendary Shasta silver wings.
Its rounded aluminum shell exemplifies all that is sleek and sturdy about the iconic midcentury design.
“It’s the perfect size for the three of us,” said Jill Hamm, who is referring to herself, John and their small Chihuahua/Yorkie-mix, Pepper, who often accompanies them on trips.
And lucky for John Hamm, the travel trailer can accommodate his height. He’s just a little more than 6 feet tall.
“When I first saw it, I said, ‘If I can fit in it, I’ll buy it,’” he said.
The trailer is complete with one regular bed and a dinette, which has booth seats and a foldable table that converts into a bed.
The floor even holds its midcentury, retro flair with a black-and-white checkered pattern.
But what makes the trailer unique is the couple’s own special additions, which include antique and thrift store finds to give it a personal touch.
“I take everything but the kitchen sink,” Jill Hamm said as she worked to set up wicker chairs, and a woven turquoise mat that looked as though it was made to match their trailer. “We throw whatever we can into the car and go when we take trips.”
Some of the couple’s favorite décor additions include paisley curtains made for the trailer’s small windows, a vintage pink flamingo, a hula girl with swiveling hips and “A Christmas Story” leg lamp, which at times can be seen glowing from the trailer’s dinette table.
“John says I can make a house out of a couple of parking spaces,” Jill Hamm said smiling.
As the Hamms sat in their wicker chairs complete with sun hats and flip flops, they began brainstorming their next trip.
“We can’t wait,” John Hamm said. “We’re excited for all of the time together and the memories.”