By Chuck Woodbury
It’s 5 p.m., Friday, and tomorrow’s RV Travel Newsletter is pretty much finished. At least my role. Diane McGovern will now take over, proofreading, fixing my mistakes, and adding features that our writers recently posted.
I have another 10 stories I want to write, but I am out of time. Some will wait for tomorrow, for our Sunday edition.
Something has happened to me in the last year. My mind has changed, in some ways good and some ways bad. I am more absent-minded, but my creativity seems to have jumped tenfold. At times it drives me mad — I have far too many story ideas for one person. I scribble notes to remember, but then I lose the notes on my messy desk or I just forget I even wrote them.
No matter where I am, on the road or at home, when Friday morning arrives I am up before daybreak. I can hardly wait to sit at my computer to begin slinging words. I type well over 100 words a minute and my fingers fly across my keyboard in a blur. I only stop for bathroom breaks and meals. Otherwise, I am planted at my desk, spewing out words every which way.
Yes, I am addicted to writing. I admit it. As John Steinbeck once wrote, “I nearly always write — just as I nearly always breathe.”
I watch the clock all day, not because I want time to pass fast like back in my school days — but to pass slowly so I have more time to write. Of course, as I progress one idea leads to another and then another. I am always behind.
Back in my print publishing days, there were a certain number of pages to fill — 32, 64 — whatever. When they were filled, you were finished. You could stop then, knowing there was no more room to do anything. You could go play — an activity, alas, I have forgotten how to do very well.
But now, there is no end — no 32 pages or 64 pages. There’s the equivalent of a million pages. If your mind is filled with ideas and you enjoy writing more than just about anything else, you don’t want to stop. Honestly, I am a crazed man because that’s the way I am for better or worse.
I love this newsletter and I love what I write about. My old days of writing about how to dump your holding tanks or how to repair a roof leak are behind me. If you want to read articles like that, do a search on this website and you will find them, usually six or seven times over.
Now, I want to explore what is happening in the world of mobile living. Where, exactly, are we who own RVs headed? And who are we — rich retirees in half-million dollar motor coaches or the poorest of the poor with a junker RV that someone gave us that we park along a city street and play hide-and-seek with the police?
Or are we Millennials who are buried in student debt who figure RV living, cheap as it is if done right, is a good way to live. So they start YouTube channels and tell everyone else how to live the life, too, and hope for a zillion followers so they can become “influencers” and rake in huge retainers from companies to praise their products to the 20-somethings who are stuck at home who can’t live charmed lives like theirs.
Or maybe those RVers are traveling nurses, or guys who repair wind machines, or build pipelines, who travel America with fifth wheel trailers, many with their families along, who rent space in RV parks for months at a time, hogging it from those RVer vagabonds who want to go “where they want, when they want” and not become slaves to reservation systems.
I started this benign rant because I wanted to tell you that even though my head right now is about ready to pop from information and idea overload, it is time to call it a day and join my other-half with a bottle of wine to unwind. She’s been in the motorhome all day getting ready for us to escape Dodge in a few days. I can hardly wait!
Thanks for traveling with me here in cyberspace. Without you I’d be talking to walls, and that might get me in trouble with folks who believe people who talk to walls are nuts.