Things we take for granted

The other day, I was reading the blog of a husband and wife who are full-timers. I had gone back through their archives to their earliest posts to a time in which these folks had just taken delivery on their new 5th wheel and one-ton pickup truck. Once they got it home, it dawned on them that “she” needed to know how to drive their new truck with a 30 foot 5th wheel trailer in tow. It was especially important to her because her husband had certain health issues that might require her to do the driving at some point. Ultimately, her father, a retired long haul trucker, came for a visit and gave her the necessary lessons. In the end, all was well, and to quote her, “nobody got maimed or killed”.

As I read and thought abSample of 5th Wheelout this, it occurred to me how much we take for granted. Like the fact that although Sharon and I both are experienced at driving our 32 foot Bounder, even at times, pulling a 24 foot enclosed trailer, we might be an exception. We take for granted that all of our other fellow RVers are equally experienced.

In our travels, it certainly is not unusual that we and others are faced with the need to back into a camp spot. Even in this day and age when it seems that every rig has a backup camera, often times one of those on board will stand at the rear of the rig in an effort to provide guidance. At least in the case of couples, it’s almost always the wife or partner. Interestingly, I seldom see the wife or partner in the driver seat. And, although that does not mean they are not experienced, I wonder in those situations if the wife or partner are taking anything for granted. Like assuming that the “driver” will always be available to drive.

What’s your situation? Assuming there is more than one of you on board, is there more than just one of you trained and/or at last minimally experienced at the things necessary for maneuvering, driving, towing your home on wheels? It’s something to think about and not take for granted.

Update: It occurred to me after I wrote this the other day that there are MANY solo full-timers out there who might have trouble relating to this post. The truth is I have no idea how a single would cope if they became incapacitated such that they could not drive. Particularly those “boondockers” whose blogs we follow. I know that, if possible and available, phone or internet could be accessed for help. But, maybe not. Then what? Are solo RVers taking anything for granted? Or is this just a risk worth taking? Probably.

I’d love some feedback on this post from any and all.

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2 Responses to Things we take for granted

  1. Karen says:

    Hi Ed and Sharon,

    I just discovered your blog today. I follow several rv blogs in order to learn tips and tricks for when my husband and I hit the road long term (not full time, but for extended trips of 5 or 6 months). We, too, are on the cusp of retirement and are hoping to take the plunge within the next year.

    You have a lovely blog and a great writing style. I will subscribe and follow your preparations and quest for the work-free world.

    We have some other things in common. We live in Apple Valley, Calif. In July, we spent our two-week vacation in Durango, Colorado. You are right – it is an amazingly beautiful area. We will return again and continue exploring the area. We stayed in a great rv park that convinced us to speed up our plans and try for early retirement. This rv park had 10 couples that work-camped through the summer season. After talking to many of these couples, we made up our minds to align our finances and jump into this lifestyle.

    Another parallel in our lives is our love for anything along Hwy. 395. We will be spending Thanksgiving week in Lone Pine. We have stayed at Boulder Creek RV Park for the past five years for Thanksgiving. This homey rv park puts on quite the spread for Thanksgiving. We have several other couples that have joined us over the years.

    Your Bounder is beautiful for a rig of its maturity. You have done a good job taking care of her. We also have a motorhome and my husband has a list of “to do’s” to get it ready for our initial retirement trip. Our dream trip is to take a leisurely romp across the U.S. with no hard-fast destinations. Just drive a few hundred miles, stop for several days and see all there is to see, and repeat.

    As for feedback on who is the primary driver in our travels, it is definitely the male figure. I have driven a few times and once I get over the feeling of an out of control steamroller with the ability to drive at freeway speeds, I do okay. Still haven’t tried anything tricky like navigating large cities or parking in an rv park, but when we are on the road for extended trips, I am sure my time will come.

    Safe travels and hope to see you on the road.

    • sunrisesandsunsets says:

      Thank you for your comments and kind words. It sounds like you folks may be more “on the road” these days than we are. But that’s okay, we’ll be catching up soon. 🙂 You are reminding me that I need to go in and further elaborate on our Durango experience over many years. It is an area that we will always include in our travels. If you have not already found it, check out Box Canyon Blog. The author and his wife live full-time in Ouray.

      It’s amazing that we have this new blog that reaches out to the RV world to say “Here we are, find us”, and one of our first subscribers lives in the same “Town”. We’re glad to have you included.

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