I wrote piece for the International Society of Caricature Artists (aka ISCA) for their member's magazine Exaggerate Features about life as a full-time RVer and working caricaturist. Feel free to check it out here!
So a full year of RV’ing has come and gone. We definitely thought we’d be blogging more, but we’ve not even had time lately to post to our Instagram page. Between visiting with family in Virginia and running a business, we’ve been very busy. These are beautiful reasons to be too busy to look at your phone. But we’ve also had some challenges lately that have kept us on our toes.
To catch you up, we had a mishap as we made our way from Massachusetts to Virginia. We hit a pretty hard bump on the road, and the wheel on our tow dolly bent out. We thought that if we took the car off the dolly, it would make it to the next destination for repairs. But the wheel ended up coming off 30 minutes down the road in Pennsylvania. So we had to leave it in Pennsylvania for repairs as we continued south to Virginia.
Now, September through December is always a very busy time in our business, and Al tends to have to fly from one place to another for work. We try to plan ahead as much as possible, but there are some things you just can’t anticipate. This monkey wrench meant we were going to have to make a 12 hour round trip from Virginia to Pennsylvania to pick up the tow dolly when it was ready. No worries. We can just drive the Jeep up to get the dolly and bring it back to the RV. No need to unhook and spend extra on gas to drive that big bus north and back. Until… I got rear ended in the Jeep by an off duty police officer. Trailer hitch pushed in 6 inches and twisted. Luckily we had the hitch on there, otherwise the back of the Jeep would have been totaled. But this means we cannot tow anything.
So now we also need repairs to the Jeep. Dealing with insurance and repair shop schedules, it doesn’t look like they can start the work for close to 3 weeks from the accident date. Which means our plans to head south after Virginia must be delayed by quite a bit. This also means giving up Al’s very fave campsite that we got lucky enough to book in Stone Mountain.
Then, Hurricane Florence popped up on the radar. We were in Virginia Beach, and the fear of flooding and strong winds across the coast meant we had to high tail it out of there, even if they didn’t get a direct hit. Probably won’t be bad in Virginia for those in houses, but you wouldn’t want to weather out that storm in a car/RV. But this helped solve the problem of how we were going to get the tow dolly in Pennsylvania. We just headed north, and found a lovely campground in Lenhartsville, up on a hill, safe from flash floods. And, conveniently enough, right by where we have the tow dolly being repaired
We’ll head back to Louisa, VA next week, with our tow dolly, and repairs to the Jeep should start the following week. In the meantime, Al will be working in Las Vegas, while I’m in PA. Once we get settled back in VA, Al will be flying out to work in Santa Fe, San Francisco, and Las Vegas. Upon his return to The Mighty Thor, if all has gone well with the repairs, we should be heading back to Florida for the season.
Truth be told, we never thought we’d be dodging hurricanes once we left South Florida. Our first year on the road was a bit of a bucket list experience, moving around hard and fast to see as much as we could. This year, we are more focused on spending longer periods of time in areas we are interested in possibly making our new home. Climate is a HUGE deciding factor for us when considering where to settle down. Obviously, after living in South Florida for most of our lives, we don’t want to move to anyplace that is susceptible to hurricanes or rising waters. We also do not have any experience dealing with brutal winters, nor is that something we want to learn. But Al HATES the heat. So while I love the Southwest, I cannot have a grumpy husband because he’s too hot. Perhaps we can compromise. Flagstaff and Taos have the Southwest vibes, but their higher elevation makes the summers more acclimatable. A large airport nearby, and large cities to support the growth of our business in the area are also very important.
In the meantime, we’re trying to find ways to make our current lifestyle more comfortable for me. Happy wife, happy life. We switched out the recliners for a couch we found on AmericanReserve.com. It’s lighter weight, more comfortable, and has more storage space. It makes the RV look more homey, and the purple color makes us smile in our hearts. We got new throw pillows to add lighter textures into the space, and changed out the colors in the bedroom area with a new quilt to pull it all together. So now it feels a bit more like home to us.
Spending so much time with family lately in Virginia has also been medicine to my soul. Being around people you know and love after so many lonely miles on the road is a gift. When figuring out where we want to live, being someplace where we have family and friends is important. But even the heat and humidity lately in Virginia has Al changing his mind about this. I think he’s willing to live alone on a mountain at this point, so long as the weather is a constant 69 degrees.
And so, we travel on.