No Right Way — Illustrated

I wanted to share some interesting contrasts that illustrate my point about there not being any ‘right way’ to RV.  These are all people we have met, or caught up with after a period of time — right here in the Wisconsin State Fair RV Park.

We tend to travel under 250 miles a day, but on occasion will be pushed to 400 miles if the need requires.  We tend to sit still for anywhere from 2 weeks to (so far) 10 months when we stop.  There are variations, sure, but that’s our normal ‘thing.’  In a typical year we put on less than 5000 miles.  We prefer state and federal campgrounds.

We caught up with Ralph and Carol whom we met last year.  They have been on the road longer than us,  they travel about twice our typical annual mileages and they typically stay in one place for 1 to 2 weeks.  They spend a lot of time visiting family and it’s not uncommon for them to go from Wisconsin, to Texas, to Florida, to Arizona and back via some circuitous route to Wisconsin.  They prefer RV parks and do a couple rallies a year.

The bright and shiny Prevost that pulled in yesterday is owned by gay couple that did more than 11,000 miles last year, and did 700 miles each day the two days prior to arriving here yesterday.  They LOVE rallies!  And they are not even full timers.

Then you have Larry and Linda who are our next door neighbors for the two months we know we’ll be here.  They are mature friends who just like spending time together. They both still work at traditional jobs — so they are clearly not full timers. They each have their own condo/houses,  Larry has a hanger at the local airport where he keeps the Country Coach during the winter — inside in a heated space.   He really likes Chrome — they/he has added chrome panels to the sides of their Country Coach and keep them buggers shining! He likes gadgets.  And he loves showing off his Country Coach.   They don’t really think about how many miles they travel — there aren’t many of them.  By their own admission the two of them really don’t ‘go’ anywhere.  They camp here at the State Fair RV park through the summer and when the snow flies they put the coach in storage.   This year they did attend the FMCA rally in Madison — along with what they said were 1500 other coaches;  all I can think is that’s too much congestion for ME.  The mass rally there is a periodic affair for FMCA which puts on a LOT of rallies each year; this was their first time attending.  They say that they have taken the coach to Pennsylvania, and he bought the coach online.  And they don’t really sound like they have any plans to do much differently than what they are doing right now.

If I were to ask the four of us couples almost any RV related question imaginable I suspect we would all have very different answers.  The WAY we RV is hugely different; the length of TIME we RV is vastly different;  the REASONS  we RV are all over the board, and our annual RV BUDGET is monumentally different!

And yet we all seem to respect each other, we’re certainly willing to sit around and share stories and trade info.  We are a diverse group, we RV’ers,  with polar differences and yet we have something very dear to us in common. I keep coming back to the fact that it’s still hard for us both to realize that we have been fortunate enough to do this for going on 4 years now.  Even with the glitches and the bumps along the way it has been a blessing to get a completely different look at life in the US than the one we had when we were typical bricks & sticks residents.  We have no deadline for how long we’ll stay on the road — as long as we can and choose — but each and every day is an adventure and a blessing. (when you have a Norcold Refrigerator there are more adventures than you might want, but hey — that’s life in an RV! — And we still love it!)


This is an amazing and a fun lifestyle for those that it fits to a ’T.’  It’s not for everyone, but for the right people it’s wonderful.  Thanks for stopping by and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.


4 thoughts on “No Right Way — Illustrated

  1. Great post, Peter. One thing I have come to notice is that most folks I speak with in campgrounds are NOT full timing and ARE still working…which I mistakenly assume to be the opposite. I’m learning. :). Along the same vein, they assume that we have their lifestyle. The fact we are retired is one thing, but the fulltiming gets the biggest reaction. “Where is your home?” “Here”. Most people can’t fathom that….nor could they ever live this lifestyle. And, as you say, that is OK. 🙂


    1. Jim — so true. Camping is still primarily for families and people making their way through life. The whole world has not yet retired! We did a lot of camping when I was young — so in my head I have that sort of glued-in. And just because they may camp in an RV doesn’t make any difference — people have a lot of things today that my family could not afford, when I was young, or even when I retired. I was not on the HIGH income track.

      Indeed most of the people in campgrounds and specially as opposed to RV parks are quite happily working their way through life. And as you mention — the fact that they can’t fathom the concept of downsizing and living with out a home has and will keep many of them home-bound — which is fine with me because there aren’t enough campgrounds in the world for the balance to go the other way. Different strokes and all……

      In the time I’ve been blogging I get two distinct kinds of comments. There are the blog comments (the less common) or face-to-face comments from people in my former life who follow along and live vicariously (the more numerous). Other bloggers know the things I write about — I’m not saying anything new to most of them, except perhaps a small number of newbies. It’s as much to the “where’s your home” crowd that I write as anyone else; as well as to myself.

      As it is I write a lot. I really try hard to limit adopt ONE sense of perspective for each post; you can only mention so many sides of a coin before you confuse people totally. But I think at it’s essence that is one reason why so many people go RV’ing for a year or 6 months and give it up as a potential lifestyle: They never looked at enough sides of REAL RV’ing to know what to expect; then they go out and buy an RV based on an ethereal dream which turns out not to be true. As long as one knows what they are getting in the bargain — great. And I guess there will always be those ‘geese’ who just do something because a friend does it and end up disappointed. And we can’t live their life for them. We all make our own mistakes.

      Still praying for you and Diana and her mom.

      > >


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