Photo taken near Monument Valley, Utah

Thursday, February 19, 2015

For Those Who Don't Quite Get It

At The Lagoons RV Resort, Rockport, Texas...

I cannot begin to tell you the number of people (non-RVers) who scratch their heads and raise their eyebrows when they hear of our retirement lifestyle. Their response goes something like this:

Non-RVer: "Let me get this straight; you drive a 16-ton bus all over the country for weeks or months at a time, pulling a car behind you and staying overnight in trailer parks?"

Me: "Well, we call them RV parks, but some folks don't even use them all the time. They just park on public lands and camp off the grid."

Non-RVer, eyes widening: "What do they do with their houses?"

Me: "Some RVers known as fulltimers don't have a regular house. They elected to sell it and live fulltime in their RVs."

Non-RVer, after audible gasp: "But you still have your house."

Me: "Yes, but we're not sure why; we're rarely there."

At this point, he or she probably has raised at least one hand, palm to the side of the face and mouth agape.

I then try to offer an explanation, perhaps by describing some recent RV travels. I could easily use a description of the simple pleasures Sandy and I experienced today:

Before dinner, we sat quietly on a bench near a wooden pier overlooking Aransas Bay. A dozen or so seagulls wandered nearby on the beach, some flying away and others swooping in to take their places, their screeches unintelligible to all but their preening brethren. There was a light breeze, so the bay was not quite as placid as usual. The fronds of the palm trees, acting as windsocks, pointed ever so slightly to the southeast, revealing the wind's direction as from the northwest. The latest cool front had all but exhausted itself, having been denuded of its clouds and ushering in the bright sunlight and impossibly blue sky that we sometimes take for granted in Texas. Although we were in our shirtsleeves, a light jacket would feel good at nightfall. It was a beautiful and peaceful place, and the world's ugliness and strife seemed very far away.

We can't help but marvel at our having been blessed to arrive at a point in our lives where we can follow the sun and not have to be entombed in the massive snowfalls of the frozen north that we've seen on TV. Or, if we're not trying to escape the heat or cold, we can merely change the scenery whenever we wish.

Some don't understand it at all, and that's fine. I know so many people who cannot imagine themselves in such a vagabond-like lifestyle, just as I cannot fathom the boredom I would be forced to endure while imprisoned in a house, awaiting the end of my mobility that old age will bring. The window for going, seeing and doing is open for now, and no one but the good Lord knows when it will close. But close it will, and I do not wish to regret the adventure not taken.
Thank you, Lord, for the wonderful life you've given me;
please forgive me if I do not appreciate it enough each day.


  1. We experience very similar responses from people who don't understand the RVing lifestyle. It truly is a pity because as most RVers know the time to travel and enjoy life is now not later when you're too sick to enjoy it.
    We did sell our home but due to Kathy's health issues we have maintained an apartment which right now has very high ridges of snow piled all around. Thankfully I didn't have to shovel it nor do i have to mow the grass. So even when we are home the biggest worry we have is what are we doing today.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  2. Well said, my friend! That last paragraph pretty much says it all.
    E & M

  3. Well said. Many people allow fear of the unknown rule their lives. We had many "what if" questions when we announced our intentions. It's been five years now, and we can't imagine going back. I always say what if its fantastic, which it has been. Enjoy your freedom!!

  4. I do not fear age, I fear lack of mobility and boredom. I will keep rolling as long as I can. About having a house, we have locked in the equity money so it will be there for us when we need to stay in a sticks and bricks. Until then it earns enough to nicely supplement our SS. Good deal!

  5. Jim and I have talked about what we would be doing if we had retired and stayed in our sticks and bricks. I think we would have both been committed after going nuts from boredom. Can't even imagine it. Life is so full and complete living in an RV. But I am glad not everybody wants to live this way.

  6. there are those who just don't 'get it'..and more than likely never will!
    As we embark on our new may not be what is deemed to be the 'perfect fulltiming adventure' but we will make it work!
    sometimes its just easier not to explain..just nod and smile!

  7. Hear, hear! Well said, Mike. I especially relate to "imprisoned in a house." Love, love following the sun.

  8. Beautifully written Mike. I always enjoy reading your blog. Have you ever considered writing a book?

  9. Yup, we enjoy going and doing when we can, while we have our health. But we did pick up a much cheaper sticks n bricks that will serve us well as a home base. We see too many people who don't go and later say they wish they did when they could. Steve is still working full time in a state park, but we are enjoying 6 weeks on the road in the southwest... escaping the cold and snow of Wisconsin.

    KarenInTheWoods and Steveio
    (Blog) RVing: The USA Is Our Big Backyard


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