By Chuck Woodbury
How often do you use your RV? A couple of weeks a year? A few months? Probably not surprising to you, there are a million RVers who live all the time in their RVs, and probably another million who spend a good part of the year in theirs.
Many people dream of the day when they can go on the road with a motorhome, trailer or other RV. They are so comfortable now that it’s easy to live in one, enjoying nearly all the creature comforts. And the freedom is incredible — when you tire of one place, move to another. You’ll make new friends as you go. Some will remain friends for years.
Recently, during a brief visit to Quartzsite, Ariz., I was invited into the fifth wheel winter home of a full-timing couple from Wisconsin. They were holed up in the wide-open desert, nobody else for 100 yards, with no hookups. Their nearest companions were a couple dozen saguaros.
As I approached the RV, I thought it must be a lonely life there. I noticed the couple had manicured their little piece of desert with a rock-lined front walkway and had placed a few potted plants in the shade of their awning. Several lawn chairs were atop a few square yards of artificial turf.
Inside, there was plenty of room for two people with all the creature comforts — spacious kitchen, TV, computer, big bedroom with bathroom — everything two people would need to live with ease and comfort. Outside, a solar system harnessed the energy of the sun to provide ample electricity.
Actually, it didn’t feel lonely at all.
Just as I entered the RV, the cell phone rang: One of the couple’s children was calling from the Midwest. The phone did double-duty as their link to the Internet. “How different was this from a ‘home’ that didn’t move?” I thought.
I recently finished up two years of full-timing. In my case, I wore out in the end. I think what ultimately did me in was the constant stimulation. There were always new people to meet, and new places to explore. For a curious person, it can become mind-numbing. My mind never rested. I increasingly yearned for a quiet place where I could be alone, with time to think. Introverts, as I am, need such quiet time.
Now, a year has passed since I returned to Seattle and bought a new home. Life now is anything but stimulating. But I feel calm, and have lots of time to think and write. I love to write, so my life is fairly close to perfect. For now, that is.
Yet, I have little doubt that it will not be long before the urge to “go” will be upon me again. My motorhome is parked alongside my house and ready to go. I still feel warm and fuzzy every time I walk into it. Some days I take my computer in there to write. Sometimes I hide out in there, maybe take a nap in my corner of the bed, a very happy and safe place.
The next time I leave with my RV I will keep the house. I know the time will come when home will beckon, and when that happens I will have no choice but to return or feel my brain explode from over-stimulation.