It’s been a while since we’ve posted a blog. Mostly, because we were in the same park for three months (John Prince Park, Lantana, FL), and just too caught up in the daily routine of our normal lives to truly enjoy the “RV Lifestyle”.
We’ve been in Florida since the beginning of October, and had planned to stay through the end of January. Due to our business, it’s more profitable for us to be in South Florida during these months. Al usually has many jobs that have him traveling all over the nation the rest of the year, and we were going to use these jobs as a road map of sorts to plan our travels for the year. But our calendar has not filled up for the year to show us which direction to head. That keeps us very tied to South Florida (where the money is).
In my heart of hearts, I want to be out west. Ideally, spend a month in Arizona before it gets too hot, a month or more in Utah, a month in Colorado, etc. But we just can’t force these things to happen. Whenever we do try to force it, our guides throw up a minor road block. So, we stay put and play the wait-and-see game. The problem with this game is that many favorable campsites in Central and South Florida are fully booked October – Easter. So we were unable to extend our stay at John Prince Park after January 31st. That sent us north to the Orlando area for the month of February. But due to limited availability, we’ve had to park hop this month.
This has been a very elegant lesson in surrendering and flowing. Our situation makes it hard to have firm plans. And we run the risk of great camp sites being fully booked during peak seasons throughout the US. Not having a plan is a bit of a stress factor for me. We try to be proactive where we can. We have already booked our South Florida campsite for Oct. 2018 – Feb 2019 in the Broward County area. We chose this over John Prince (Palm Beach County) because it is more central to working jobs in Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach. It felt like I was driving from Palm Beach to Miami three times a week last season!
At this point, we do not know what the Universe has in store for us March – September. It is exciting because, quite frankly, the Universe is always gifting us with surprises. And it is nerve wracking because we want to stay in nice places.
HIT OR MISS CAMPSITES
We knew that this first year was going to be a huge learning curve. We’d figure out where we like to stay so we can go there again, and learn what to avoid. You cannot always choose your campsite. You may be planning to stay at a beautiful park for three months, and hate your campsite. And there are many factors that contribute to a site being good or bad. You may be able to choose your exact campsite in advance based on a map, but you really don’t know what it will be like until you are there. The site we’re in right now is a dirt pit, but the ones all around us have lush grass. I hope we don’t try to exodus from here during the rain, because we may get stuck in a mud hole.
Some parks will resonate with you more than others. I felt so much more peace and joy once we left South Florida and got into the Orlando area, but I do not like the campground we are in for the next three weeks. It’s our fist time staying at an Encore / Thousand Trails park. There are many people who live here year round, and it’s a weird mix of campground and trailer park. It has a very different feel from the KOA’s we’ve stayed at the past few weeks. (I LOVE KOA’S!)
This lifestyle, especially if you are moving around a lot over the course of a year, can keep throwing you into different extremes, vacillating between “I love where I live” and “I hate where I live”. Luckily, you won’t be there too long. But this extreme is the difference between me wanting to go out and play, and staying inside and hiding.
MOVING DAY – ARG!
If you do find yourself moving around a lot, you may want to think about a simple rig set-up. We have a 38 ft. bus, with a tandem tow dolly in the back that adds and extra 10+ feet once the car is on the dolly. Because the dolly is so large, this usually means we cannot navigate the park with the dolly attached to the RV, and must store it in the overflow lot. So aside from our normal prepping (bringing in the awning and chairs, disconnecting the hoses and power, etc.), we have a huge chore dealing with the dolly and car that looks something like this:
Needless to say, moving day can really take ALL DAY, even if you are just going to a campground a few miles from where you were originally.
When we were planning for our trip to Burning Man in 2016 with our little trailer camper, my sister-in-law said “It’s only as complicated as you make it”. Wise words. Are we making this too complicated?