After we came up with the idea for this trip, of course we had to figure out how to execute it. The route was a piece of cake. Once the MLB schedule was released in September, Ron had that figured out in 20 minutes and of course could spout it by memory. The next question was: which RV do we get?
SELECTING AN RV
There are a lot of options and although my parents own an RV, neither of us really had experience with them. So, to the internet I went! There is a ton of information out there about going RV. First I Googled and then decided to consolidate my research on Pinterest. The web is filled with ideas and links to articles about storage and lists — yes! I love lists! – for everything from maintenance to personalization to what to pack and where to stay and how to get your mail. Many a night I lay awake pinning and reading and clicking away. We also recorded and watched multiple tv shows on the topic including “Going RV” on the Travel Channel. There is plenty of data on how to select the right RV for you.
LAYOUT IS KEY
We needed something big enough to live in full time, but not TOO big. We would be towing Ron’s car, and neither of us had ever driven anything that big. To be honest, I wasn’t nervous about that though. I never doubted that we could handle it. In October we went to a couple of RV dealers to get an idea of the type (Class A, Class C, hybrid) and what size we needed and could afford. Then in January we went to an RV show in Charlotte. If you are considering it, definitely go walk thru different ones. There are so many layouts, etc.
We ended up with a “35 foot” Class A because we liked the layout (placement of the TV, L-shaped couch, and a dedicated desk at which I can work while Ron is driving) and we liked the way it drove/rode. Yes, we both test drove the Thor Windsport 35M on a very windy day in Charlotte, and dare I say, we handled it like champs! I was a bit nervous at first, but the turns were straightforward and the biggest thing is to keep it between the lines by looking in the side mirrors. I don’t think I hit the rumble strips once, thank you!
A HOME FOR HOLMES
Another key requirement is that we wanted to be able to walk back into the coach while on the road and for our dog Holmes to be comfortable. He is still not crazy about the “house” moving down the road, but he makes himself comfortable on the couch, on his doggie bed, or occasionly on our bed. He never slept on our previous bed, but the one on the RV is lower and we have caught him there a couple of times when we have come home. I suspect it’s because of our scent and he misses us.
I nicknamed him “Sheldog” because at the house he had his spot on the couch (similar to Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory). If you were sitting there, he would walk up, put his paw there, and look at you as if to say, “Ahem, you know that’s my spot.” Spoiling him, I would move and he would get right up. I am certain he will find that spot in the RV as well, hence, the L-shaped couch.
WE’RE NOT ROUGHING IT
There are two slideouts, one in the bedroom and one in the living/dining area. That nice big couch has a retractable feature of its own so there is plenty of room to walk thru even with the slideout rooms retracted. Thus while we are moving I can get to the kitchen and residential refrigerator. I have not, but I could watch TV in the living room, and I can use the half bath.
Yes, I said half bath. Never would I have thought I’d be saying I have one and a half baths in my RV, but here I am! It is nice to have his and hers spaces. Guess which one is his.
We also have a lot of storage inside and under the RV. The coach is wired for a washer and dryer, but we opted to use that space for a closet and to house our printer.
Speaking of storage, how much does one really need? Here is where the “what were we thinking” comes in. We made the right choice of RV, but when downsizing from a house to an RV, one realizes how much stuff they have accumulated. Let me just say, it’s not a simple task. I’ll leave the details for my next blog post about full-time RV life.