As you recognize we’ve got launched into both the most effective journey of our lives, or the worst concept we’ve ever had, solely time will inform. We lastly obtained on the street, dwelling the RV Life about two months in the past with the intention of dwelling like hippies on their technique to Woodstock. We weren’t going to emphasize about something ever once more, we had been simply going to wing it and make it up as we go, it was going to be a pleasant stress-free journey across the nation following 70 diploma excellent climate days. Simply Me, My Spouse, and Our Canine.
You hear tales like ours on a regular basis, possibly not from actual folks you truly meet, however undoubtedly on these cable journey channels. It’s normally somebody who was once a butterfly photographer that simply offered their home for 1.5 Million, however not Actual folks.
Sounds nice proper? Pile of money within the financial institution, wind in your hair as you go down the street, flipping 1 / 4 at each cease signal to see which approach you’re going subsequent…
To date it hasn’t gone like that in any respect.
My birthday is in early March, and in New Jersey meaning typically you’re advantageous with only a sweatshirt for the day, and typically there’s two toes of snow for my birthday. This 12 months I don’t wish to be chilly. I’m bored with it. I haven’t been simple on my physique the previous 40 years, and the chilly jogs my memory of each single damage. No, This 12 months we aren’t freezing for my birthday, We’re going to be sitting on a seaside in Miami.
We booked a spot for a month from Valentines day to St Pats in Florida Metropolis in order that we had loads of time to discover the Keys, and Miami, and the Everglades, and simply not be chilly this winter. That is going to be excellent, we’ve got over a month to make it from Jersey to Florida, greater than sufficient time to see household and associates alongside the best way with out ever feeling rushed.
We hitched up the fifth wheel and headed for the border. We had been lastly leaving New Jersey. Nothing can cease us now, the truck is filled with gasoline and I’m not stopping till it must get topped off once more, we needs to be properly out of the “North East Area” earlier than even needing to consider stopping.
Effectively if you recognize my Spouse, you recognize there isn’t a restroom alongside the interstate freeway system that she hasn’t been in. A couple of half an hour into our 2 12 months journey I hear the notorious, “Can we cease for espresso?”, which is Spouse Converse for “I have to pee, however I do know it’s too quickly to ask to cease for that”.
As lovingly as I may, I replied “Honey, I’ve 500 horses pulling 10,000 kilos and so they ain’t stoppin for something”.
5 minutes later I used to be getting us espresso whereas she was checking off one other cease on her toilet world tour map. No large deal, we aren’t vacation spot time primarily based anymore, we’re simply on a street journey with no plans. No should be in a rush anymore, we’ve got the time to cease. We don’t have to do a 20 hour haul from Roswell New Mexico to Las Vegas Nevada as a result of we’re delayed and our son solely has 2 weeks off of college anymore.
This primary potty break was an indication of how the following month was going to go and I by no means even realized it till I used to be trying again on the journey to date. There have been going to be a number of issues that we Knew that we had been going to must Relearn. Far more than simply “Doug isn’t stopping till we get there”, transitioning into “Certain, we are able to cease”.
Our first 300 miles from NJ to Shenandoah River State Park ought to have taken round 5 hours. It was nearer to 7. We should always have had loads of daylight left to get parked and arrange. After we backed into our website, I used to be glad that I had put in further reverse lights on the camper as a result of it was pitch black within the valley already.
The following morning, we took our canine Lagertha (lag-a-tha) for a stroll to take a look at our new again yard, and the journey switched from annoying gradual to completely price it.
The solar rose brighter, the air smelled cleaner, even the animals had been happier right here. Or, possibly it was me. Both approach, waking up within the mountains of Virginia was nonetheless higher than any morning caught at dwelling.
Usually we’d have completed strolling the canine after which connected and headed out on our technique to the following cease, however this time, this journey, we’re slowing issues down. We’re going to keep one other evening and simply take pleasure in not having a schedule to maintain and the truth that there isn’t any snow on the bottom.
The morning is brisk, however by the afternoon the temperature will get heat sufficient to exit and do some path mountain climbing and simply chill out earlier than we hit the street, not fairly 70, however nearer, and approach higher than the 30 levels again dwelling. The next morning the temps are within the 20s, nowhere close to 70. Time to go.
Subsequent cease, Croft State Park , not tremendous removed from Greenville SC so I can see my brother and his household, who we don’t get to see fairly often in any respect. We’ve lived within the RV for nearly 6 months now, and now we’re in no rush in any respect, this leg of the journey needs to be tremendous simple.
Effectively, we lived within the RV stationary for six months at an RV park again in NJ, guess what we weren’t within the behavior of doing? Locking the fridge…
Know after we realized it? About 10 miles down the street after we left Shenandoah.
Know after we discovered a spot to drag over alongside the facet of the twisty, turning, steep mountain roads? About one other 15 miles down the street…
So… That was cool. However, all is properly now, again on the street.
We spent the following couple days, catching up with Mike and Jen and the children, and making up for misplaced time with the laughs we haven’t gotten to share collectively the final couple years and had an important stress-free go to. However, alas, its time to go once more.
Subsequent cease Charleston to go to Loretta’s finest pal Jenny. We’re solely staying right here two or three days too then its on to Georgia. 10 days later we’d truly be on the street.
We had a good time visiting with Jen and Brandon and the children, and so they even allow us to Moochdock of their driveway, so we’re saving a ton of cash on campsites. Loretta had been to Charleston to go to Jen up to now, however I had by no means been there and didn’t thoughts the additional time trying out a brand new metropolis, and with Jen and Brandon dwelling there, it was like having our private tour guides so we obtained to see stuff some folks would possibly miss out on.
Someplace alongside the road these 10 days, our son and his finest pal satisfied us to begin a youtube channel. This feels like an important concept! Simply shoot some video, publish it on-line, subsequent factor ya know we will likely be wealthy and well-known and dwelling in Ibiza. It isn’t that simple in any respect actually.
Don’t get me flawed, we’re LOVING doing the movies each week, and studying new issues with the video editor, however we’re alleged to be retired now. How did our Son trick us again right into a full time job that we don’t even receives a commission for? Regardless of, he wins this spherical, and if you wish to see among the cool stuff we discovered within the Charleston space, take a look at the video beneath.
We mentioned our goodbyes and obtained again on the street. We’re 2 weeks in now, and beginning actually really feel the relief that comes with not having anyplace to be and on a regular basis on the planet to get there. Our subsequent cease is in Georgia to go to our associates Kim and Austin.
We arrange store in Excessive Falls State Park for five days. The park was stunning, there have been a number of nice trails to go mountain climbing on, the climate is beginning to be constantly hotter on daily basis. Issues are trying up. We had been solely about an hour from Senoia, which is the place they movie The Strolling Lifeless, and have finished a number of different television reveals and films, so lets go test it out.
In case you haven’t been there, undoubtedly add it to you record of stops, even in the event you aren’t a fan of The Strolling Lifeless. The city is an ideal mix of small city and vacationer city. There’s a cool major avenue with retailers and even a restaurant owned by Greg Nicotero and Norman Reedus from the present.
We spent the remainder of the time in Georgia hanging out with Kim and Austin, catching up on previous instances and making some new reminiscences. The ladies went out and obtained their nails finished whereas Austin and I went and had just a few drinks and checked out a brand new restaurant. Even with going out to eat just a few further instances the final couple weeks, we’re nonetheless on price range due to Jen letting us Moochdock, and utilizing the state parks as an alternative of RV Resorts.
That gave us an concept for our second youtube video, on the best way to street journey on a price range.
We wrapped up manufacturing on our second video, and began right down to Chewacla State Park for just a few days. There’s an important waterfall hike, and we’ll get to see our Nieces, and Sister in regulation. The park was superior, the verify in employees was nice, and we’re even practising what we preach in our newest youtube video. Hell, we’re even right here forward of schedule for a change, so we’re going to have the ability to shock the women and decide them up from college!
As quickly as we parked, the complications began.
It took us nearly an hour simply to get the RV unhooked from the truck. The entrance jacks on the Fifth Wheel had been taking turns not working. As a substitute of lifting the entrance of the RV, they’d rotate it over to 1 facet or the opposite.
I can really feel it beginning to come again now. That stress stage and perspective of a building boss who’s crew is delayed and each time he seems to be round they’re all “on break” once more. A number of hammer blows to the touchdown gear and some alternative phrases of encouragement, each legs lastly come down and we are able to unhook the truck. Simply must stage it, runs the slides out and plug in. We will nonetheless make it to the college on time…
We change again to our regular routine. I hit the Auto Stage button. Loretta grabs the water hose, I seize the ability twine. Then we hear the beeping error from the jacks once more. Mom Fu…
Shut sufficient to stage. Run the rattling slides out and lets go.
Slides went out simply advantageous, we go to replenish the canine water bowl and the pipes are banging like a cop serving a search warrant. The ability is flickering like we’re in the midst of a Halloween haunted home. And my endurance stage is nearing an all time low for the day.
Loretta takes the canine for a stroll and calls Kayla to let her know we lastly obtained the camper and truck separated, I’ve a dialogue with our camper about how drained I’m of its bullshit right this moment.
Loretta comes again and says “Kayla mentioned this was Jasons favourite place to come back tenting”. Now all of it is smart. Jason and I used to bust every others chops on a regular basis when he was nonetheless with us, and now we’re at his favourite park. I don’t put a lot inventory on this kinda factor, however after listening to that, I seemed to the sky and mentioned “Okay, you bought me bro, good one.” All the pieces mounted itself at that second and we haven’t had a difficulty with the RV since.
We did make it to the college on time to select up the women and spent the following 3 days realizing how completely satisfied we had been we solely had one boy. My nieces ran me via the ringer, and the youngest in some way satisfied me to do gymnastic stretches together with her, I feel I’m nonetheless strolling crooked.
After we depart right here we’re within the dwelling stretch on our journey right down to Miami for just a few weeks to flee the chilly. We’re heading south into the west facet of Florida, then East over to St Augustine to go to with Aunt Stacy and Uncle Mark and take a look at Outdated Metropolis. Once more, one other metropolis I’ve by no means been too and we’ve got private tour guides.
That is one other metropolis I’d extremely suggest going to in the event you’ve by no means been earlier than. It’s like Pirates Of The Caribbean meets Nashville. There’s cool stuff to do for each age group within the household, and the climate is gorgeous even in January.
Throughout our tour of the town, I hopped over a small guard rail to take an image and popped one thing in my knee. Now I’m doing the peg leg pirate stroll across the metropolis, the remainder of this journey needs to be enjoyable…
From right here we solely have a pair stops left. We’re heading west in the direction of Tampa and stopping to go to Lorettas dad and mom alongside the best way, then on to see my cousin Katie and her husband Jimmy, and if we are able to squeeze it in, a go to with our associates Kristen and Craig and seeing some sights across the metropolis. Then its off to Fort Myers to go to Lorettas brother Daniel and sister Rebecca and our niece and nephews.
We managed to make the schedule work to see everybody, and even squeezed in an hour to take a seat on the seaside in February, as a result of in the event you can sit on the seaside in February, why wouldn’t you?
Know what occurs we you go from bundled up in winter garments within the north east to half bare within the decrease latitudes and overlook sunblock as a result of its February? Yup…
Regardless of. Tomorrow we’re on the final leg, and I’d reasonably be a bit of itchy from a sunburn than dwelling shoveling snow.
At this level we’ve got been on the street a month and a half and each of us are trying ahead to being stationary for a short while so we are able to simply take a minute to catch our breath and simply chill out.
I’ll be trustworthy. We haven’t relaxed but. I don’t suppose we had been even arrange for 10 minutes earlier than our new neighbor David pointed and yelled “You guys obtained winners, seize a beer and prepare” and we haven’t stopped since.
We’re right here for a month from Valentines to St Pats, we’ve obtained loads of time to get some stuff finished, can’t damage to go meet the brand new neighbors and throw some cornhole for a bit proper?
We’ve been right here 3 weeks and haven’t gotten any of our “chores” finished but. The folks listed here are superior, and it nearly appears like dwelling. All of us hang around like “regular” neighbors, and exit and do issues collectively, and meet up within the pool or the on website tiki bar on the finish of the day and commerce tales of our adventures for the day.
We nonetheless have to verify Lagertha will get her Mother & Dad time, and her every day excursions. We had an entire record of issues we had been going to do after we obtained down right here, and didn’t do a single one in every of them for two weeks. We had been simply having enjoyable with our new “Florida Household” and time began to get away from us.
We realized it one Saturday morning and advised ourselves we couldn’t go exterior and play with our associates till we obtained some stuff on the calendar so we’d truly go verify it off. We took the following 2 hours and obtained some adventures lined up. Now we are able to go hang around, and we’ve got “days off” after we can go do stuff.
We now have made some superior new associates and are actually having a good time taking part in within the Florida solar, but when there may be one factor that Life On The Highway is educating me, its that I actually miss my sofa…
Perhaps the following campground we are able to simply sit across the fireplace and catch our breath? Nah…