We pulled out of our old driveway two years ago on Sunday of Memorial Day to start our life on the road. Our friends & family (& even total strangers) are still just amazed that Jeff & I can happily live full time in our 17’ Casita (Spanish for little house) molded fiberglass travel trailer. Mostly, we’re thrilled just to be rid of the responsibility required by all the stuff needed to live in a permanent location. We don’t feel like we’ve given up anything worth having!
Without a yard & a sticks & bricks dwelling, we’re not wasting time, money, & energy maintaining, cleaning, repairing, insuring, paying taxes on, heating, or cooling. We don’t need yard & garden equipment, trash cans, or much outdoor furniture or tools. We don’t accumulate other people’s stuff, lots of souvenirs (just digital photos & an occasional T-shirt), multiple seasons’ worth of clothing (we try to go to areas with the nicest of seasons), dishes for large gatherings, nor holiday decorations. And we don’t need much furniture nor home decorations.
We not only have the basic essentials (running water, indoor toilet/shower, heat & A/C, stove/sink/frig) but also the most important amenities for us (microwave, TV, internet, phone svc, outdoor grill, & shaded patio with lawn chairs) — all contained within our cozy little trailer. Oh, & our dog Kira & two kitties too are essential. We’ve acquired a 45 gal water bladder to haul water to boondocking locations, a gray-boy for dumping holding tanks, plus portable solar panels, four 6v batteries, & a 1000w inverter for our electrical needs when off the grid. I’ve learned how to conserve water usage, & even how to wash clothes by hand when needed.
Besides visiting & investigating gorgeous areas of the US (all those special places Jeff & I both served in the military to protect), plus meeting friendly & fascinating people, we’ve reduced the stress associated with affording & maintaining a permanent home. With our limited space, we don’t even have the temptation of accumulating anything we don’t actually need on a regular basis. We love that our life now is much simpler, relaxed, & yet more exciting. We’ve managed mail forwarding, banking & bill paying, voting & taxes, vehicle & trailer maintenance, medication refills & doctor appointments, shopping in new areas, & even a sense of belonging to a community ALL FROM THE ROAD.
We’ve learned that celebrating holidays, birthdays, & anniversaries with friends & family whenever we’re present is just as SWEET. Staying in touch thru phone calls & email is more important tho when you’re miles & states away from someone rather than just down the street. Most RVers are friends we just haven’t met before.
We’ve worked at campgrounds/resorts most of the past two years (plus managing a Christmas tree lot for 2 months), but finally spent this past winter on vacation sort of, traveling around Utah, Arizona, & New Mexico — avoiding serious cold & snow! We loved boondocking in the desert, but got a serious rush seeing the Plains states bursting out with green leaves & flowers this Spring. As great as leisure time is tho we’ve learned that having a temporary job is also good for us physically & financially. This lifestyle IS NOT about being on permanent vacation nor accumulating money or possessions — it’s about balancing our time with beneficial, non-stressful activity & healing relaxation without boredom. We have limited our ambitions & expectations, as well as travel days. We’ve thought about an exit strategy, but so far only determined we will probably just park the Casita somewhere on a fairly permanent basis — if we can find the right location (we’re still searching).
We survived running Archer’s Canyon Grill in Poudre Canyon CO for the Memorial Day crowds, but we’re definitely needing our days off work to recuperate. We’re totally pleased with the location, duties, & personnel of this new workkamping job! However, we’re both having some unpleasant adjustments to the 7300’ elevation. This too shall pass. Oh, the MRI on Jeff’s knee showed nothing torn or broken & his knee seems to finally be healing & getting stronger. We have lots of fantastic views of the Rockies to investigate this summer.
I’ve talked with various wannabes worried about feeling cramped living in an RV with their spouse or partner, but it’s never been a problem for us. One or both of us likes being outside much of the time. If it’s too cold, hot, or wet outside, then it’s just cozy & comfortable being inside.
In spite of the malfunctions that accompany getting older (old?), life is definitely getting better living small, on the road.