I Admire You

“I admire you” the grandmother said to me while drying my hair in the bathroom of the KOA San Luis Obispo, CA.  As a single woman in a RV, I get some attention in campgrounds.   The Airstream helps.  Certainly, there are more men than woman out there enjoying the road, but I am not alone as a single woman.  And there are hundreds of websites, YouTube videos and blogs for full-time RVers.   I told the grandmother, I couldn’t wait around to find a man to do it with me, not for lack of trying.

My favorite site is of course AllStays, which lists all campgrounds, Walmart’s, propane stations and dump sites.  DoItYourselfRV offers tips on how-to, and other interesting stories of RVers.  Today there was a list of celebrates that own RVs.  Matthew McConaughey has a vintage Airstream in Malibu, and Jeff Daniels drives a Gulf Stream Tour Master in Upper Michigan in the winter.  According to Daniels, “You aren’t a real American if you have never been behind the wheel of an RV”.

When asked where I live, and I say an Airstream, the most often response is, “that is my dream”. 

 “Baby boomers” retiring, moving into RVs and seeing the country.  We were the first generation to travel in trailers, so going back to camping in retirement seems the perfect way to complete the circle of life.

3 tips: 1) You don’t need all that stuff – clutter doesn’t work in an RV; 2) It takes longer than you planned – stuff happens that you weren’t expecting; and, 3) Don’t drive more than 200 miles in a day – driving is exhausting when you are towing a trailer.   The fear of a flat tire or even worse a blow out, not to mention crazy or inconsiderate drivers.  Merge is a foreign concept.

What is the hardest thing, or the thing I hadn’t expected?  Loneliness – although expected.  My solidarity nature is a benefit.  Also, I prefer urban life to wilderness.  My idea of a hike is walking 18 holes of golf.  So, finding a nice coffee shop or sidewalk cafe to watch people and write or read, is a regular activity and provides social interaction to ward off loneliness.  But hanging out in a campground under trees or on a beach is a wonderful way to enjoy the day.  People in campgrounds are exceedingly friendly and helpful.  Especially when backing into a campsite.

Another interesting blog is Workers on Wheels, where jobs are posted in campgrounds.  This month there is an ad for workers to come to Wyoming RV park for short-term help — a couple of weeks — to help with their solar eclipse events in mid-August.  Someday I might work as a campground host when I want to stay put for several months.

Mostly I am looking forward to hearing Diane and John’s experience driving Scout across country for me in September, and returning to my road to reinvention.  

Until then, I am madly sewing Scout’s new decor, pillows, quilt, curtains and cushions.   And, dreaming of the day my friends and family who keep talking about RVing will join me.

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