First Anniversary on the Road

Today is our 1 year anniversary as a full-time RVers. In all my life, I never thought that would be something I would actually say! It’s been an interesting and amazing year, what with letting go of the past, enjoying the present and looking forward to the future.

A Brief Look Back

Mileage: 9,179 miles

States Visited: 26

States we visited in our first year on the road

We started in Oregon; August 10th was our first night actually sleeping in the RV — although I can’t say that we were truly “moved in” at that point. It was only after we spent that first 10 days getting organized and taking extra stuff back to storage that we were really “on the road”.

We’ve been keeping detailed Google maps of our trip — you can see them on The Maps page. And we try to do regular posts our travels and what we’ve seen, although we do tend to get a little bit behind.

What We’ve Learned

No anniversary post would be complete without some reflection on the preceeding year.  Since the internet (and most people) love lists, here’s a brief list of some of the more important things we’ve learned in the past year:

  • First rule of bus club is contain the dog.
  • Second rule of bus club is contain the dog AND the cat.
  • If you want to sleep with your head higher (or level with) your feet, don’t park on soft ground because levelers will just sink in and do no good.
  • Google Maps, Weatherbug, Campendium, Overnight RV Parking and Gas Buddy are your friends (but like most friends, they will sometimes tell you little white lies).
  • Never turn off the bus when it’s in gear (don’t even ASK how we know that … it’s a long, involved, scary and ultimately pretty funny story about the mistakes newbies can make which we may post someday).
  • Believe your air pressure monitoring system.  If it says you have a tire with only 13 lbs of pressure, believe it (even when you don’t believe it) … BELIEVE IT!  (and fix it)
  • Never leave the bus without several Doggie Poo Bags. Corollary: If the dog says he needs to poo, believe him (even when you don’t believe it).
  • Stay organized. It’s surprising how much stuff you can lose even in such a small space.
  • Secure the fridge door before hitting the road.  Note: a milk carton WILL explode when it flies out of the fridge and hits the deck.
  • Quarters are important.  No quarters = no clean clothes, sometimes no shower and not getting through an “exact cash” toll booth.
  • Ticks are the foulest creatures on the face of the earth.
  • Get permission before you park overnight in a parking lot; being awakened and having to move at 4 AM is not pleasant.
  • Travel with someone you like to spend time with (a lot of time with) and when all else fails, send him off to the store. Alone. (or go shopping … by yourself)
  • Last but not least, keep your sense of humor at all times – you’ll need it when you least expect it.

A Look Into The Future

What does the future hold?  More travel! There are still 23 states we can get to (not sure how approach travel to Hawaii …).  Like most RVers, we are tending to follow the weather, so our plans involve avoiding Montana and North Dakota in the winter, and Arizona, New Mexico and the whole of the southeast in the summer.

For the immediate future, we’re heading through New York (Bucket List item: Niagra Falls), and through Ohio where I want to do some research on my ancestors (the Harper, Cowles, Byrd and Denning lines), and then to someplace not-too-cold for the winter.

It’s one of the joys of the lifestyle – looking forward to what the next 31,536,000 seconds will bring!



4 responses to “First Anniversary on the Road”

  1. Carol Woodruff

    Sweetest, cutest “debrief” I’ve ever had the privilege to read. Thanks so much for creating such a fun piece and catching us up on your travels and adventures. Actually, I’d love to hear more detail about your specific adventures — positive ones and otherwise. Tell me about ticks. Tell me what wildlife you saw or had close encounters with. What state(s) impressed you the most. How the cat is faring the trip so far. Gas mileage (ugh!). How you like to drive that big ol’ honker. Where, if anywhere, you considered settling down — or at least where you’d love to visit again, stay a bit longer and explore some more. What stories you’d like to write about it all…or did write. I just love that you are doing this! And most of all, I love knowing the two of you and being your friend.

  2. Barb B. Martin

    Marie & Jere!
    Ah! Your list advises many useful & imperative ideas and decisions!

    Carpe Diem!

    Hoping to send an email soon now that our 4 house guests have left……peace & quiet!!

  3. Here’s a link to Willie Nelson’s “On the Road Again.”…

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