RVing, as with most things in life, has its bright sides and its not-so-bright sides. Even if I had almost everything I thought I wanted in my life, events, chores, and unexpected challenges, would pop up and attempt to derail me from my Perfect Lifestyle.
Even if I had almost everything I thought I wanted in my life, events, chores, and unexpected challenges, would pop up and attempt to derail me from my Perfect Lifestyle.
But I learned in my seventeen years of fulltime RVing that how I handled these blips, and adjusting my attitude toward them before they happened, often – in fact most of the time – softened the discomfort of having to deal with them.
I just read an article in Drivin’ & Vibin’ titled “The 6 Worst Things About Full Time RV Living.” Having dealt with all six of these issues, here is my view on how to handle these “6 Worst Things” in an efficient manner and with a positive attitude.
1. Internet Connection. The author states that an internet connection is “essential” and I would not argue that. However, as essential as a connection may be in the connected world we live in, it is not essential that I be connected all day, every day and night. Living either part time or fulltime in an RV should not require having all the conveniences I have when living in a permanently connected structure. RVing should be more about traveling, exploring, getting out into the natural world, and yes, getting away from constant connectivity and doing something different. By determining what Internet services are essential and which are only desirable, I schedule what I need the Internet for on days that I have connectivity. The others, I hike, paddle, birdwatch, sightsee, read books (remember what they are?), and a multitude of other activities that do not require being online.
2. Nasty Weather. The author rightfully points out “we live on wheels, so we are free to move.” I would not be in a place where the weather was so nasty that it became unpleasant for long periods. And for short periods, it can be quite nice to take a hike in the rain and return to a snug nest of an RV, or to watch a howling storm from that snug nest. Enjoying Mother Nature’s show can be entertaining if I am comfortable. I have a propane heater that doesn’t require battery-killing electricity, plenty of books (and even more ebooks) to dive into, and look forward to when the weather pattern passes over and the sun again peaks out from behind dramatic storm cloud formations.
3. Storage Space. Do I really need all the stuff I carry around? Of course not. In my first year of fullltiming I think I eliminated half of what I had crammed into my motorhome in anticipation of some sort of apocalypse. After the stuff was gone, I never missed it. And I didn’t stress about lack of storage space any more.
4. RV Maintenance. I would have moved this to the top of the “Worst” list had I made a list. But maintenance is essential, and if I couldn’t accept this from the beginning, then maybe I shouldn’t have chosen the RV Lifestyle. So best to deal with it and be prepared. I found that having a set maintenance schedule, and performing these tasks as part of my daily schedule instead of just waiting for something to break and disrupt whatever plans I may have had. Schedule adequate time each month for checking all your fastenings, hose connections, battery cable connections, search for leaks, tire pressures, etc. If your list is longish, break it up into smaller blocks of time, more easily handled on separate days – like several 100-yard runs compared to a marathon. Prevention is the key word.
5. Laundry. My wife and I agreed that laundry was a maximum once-a-week chore, and would be scheduled for when we also re-supplied our coffers and took care of any in-town chores that were required. We made sure we had enough clothes (we were very active so required fresh changes daily) to last 10 days or more so we had plenty of leeway, and we usually enjoyed our time in town, having lunch, shopping, wandering the streets, and checking in at the visitor center to see what attractions we might have missed.
6. Being Lonely. Any contact with other warm bodies usually was resolved in #5 above. I don’t think either of us has ever felt lonely. We enjoy solitude away from a busy and noisy world, and especially exploring the natural world.
So yes, the 6 Worst Things may be one way of looking at the RV life, but with a little change in perspective and attitude, and a little more curiosity toward the world outside of our normal stick home life can quickly become the parts of RV life that are embraced, not lamented.