Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Steven's Top 10

RV living, whether it's full-timing, part-timing or just vacationing, means different things to different people. It's a brand new experience and a brand new way of thinking. During our maiden voyage from Sacramento to Seattle, both Linda and I learned things together but there were certain things that struck us individually. We compiled two top ten lists of the things that stood out in our minds.

These spiffy Walmart clipon shades almost made the top ten list but alas...
Okay, so here are Steven's Top Ten Observations:

1. Living in close quarters with my wife Linda is not a challenge. In fact, we thrive together when we are living in small spaces. Having had many conversations with people who dream about this lifestyle but admit that they would kill their partner, I know this life is right for us. We went from 5000 square feet to 3000, but this trip in 350 square feet felt the best of all. And with one week under our belts, we are still best friends. Now that's saying something.

2. Stripping down my possessions to their bare essence is good for me and good for the psyche. When weight is a factor and limited space abounds, there is no room for something I thought I might need sometime. I'm only allowed have what I know I'll need. Anyway, the simpler life is, the less cluttered my brain is.

3. Speaking of less clutter in my brain, little things make a big difference in my RV. When I wake up all I want to do is look outside and maybe go for a walk in my new surrounds. No grass to mow and no weeds to pull. Prepping coffee the night before brings me joy the next morning and helps me get out quickly with a cup of Joe in hand. Running water and scooping coffee seems so easy at night. When I am in a half sleep stupor in the morning, I may as well be trying to solve the Rubik's Cube. So flipping the on switch and getting out with the sweet sounds of the early birds is what I'm all about.

Early morning bird trying to figure out how to free the dude behind the mirror
4. As gross as this is, it has to be said. In my relatively tiny RV bathroom I am aware of everything that leaves my body like never before. I can tell you the precise time I did whatever yesterday if you really want to know. Sitting on such a little potty and being at the mercy of a somewhat primitive flushing system keeps one on point.

5. For me, ritual is the key to successful RVing. Let me give you a for instance. Odel told me he made it a part of his every Sunday to clean out the black tank. I have read of many people having issues with a black tank that's overflowing. How can this really occur when you are emptying it regularly? I mean, c'mon people, do it well and do it frequently... I plan to do just that.

Odel demonstrates the ins and outs of the plumbing system
6. There can be no clutter in the small footprint of an RV interior. I have to multiply everything by a factor of ten to get a sense of the equivalent in a regular home environment. One shoe strewn across a four feet wide walkway is equal to ten random shoes tossed about your common or garden living room. Same with the kitchen. Because of the small workspace, one dirty pot can cause a huge bottleneck for the next person who just wants to fill the kettle for a lovely cup of tea.

7. It's easy to take the word "camping" out the equation when I am traveling in such luxury. It was a no brainer to me when we had Alfred Hitchpop (our popup camper) to just get out in the air and eat outside or go for a walk or look up at the sky or scrape squirrel poop off my shoe. In Scoopy however, it's very comfy inside and the outside can sometimes look like a cruel world by comparison. Why go outside when it's warm here in my leather recliner with my spotty wifi? Exercise is key to staying healthy so I must avail of the myriad trails available near almost every campground. I can charge my iPad while I'm out.

8. Instead of mindlessly browsing the Web, it's sometimes important to get up and chop some of those veggies we bought at the market. Preparing meals is really important to me because the munchies will arrive and when they do and if I'm not prepared, I will march right up to the freezer in the campground store where the ice cream resides. Okay once in a while but not something to make a habit of.

9, Having a printer in our RV is also critical, preferably the wireless kind that will also work with my iPad. There is no substitute for a physical map in my hand when push comes to shove when my GPS chick decides to slip me a McGuffin.

Nothing beats a printed map and we've now got just the thing for the job!
10. Finally, keeping the rig bug-free and shite-free contributes to nice curb appeal at a campsite. It also shows that I care about my home. Scoopy is in such wonderful shape even though she is eleven years old, it's inspirational. People have asked me if it is a new rig and when they hear she's an '02 model, they almost choke on their diet supplement shakes. I plan to continue keeping her looking young and beautiful.

Odel shares the secret of keeping Scoopy  young and beautiful
Stay tuned for a list of things Linda learned, coming soon!


  1. Nice post Steven. I see you've given this a lot of thought.

  2. Great blog! You've hit it on the nose.

  3. great post, Steven..nice to hear your 'side of the story'!
    we all know you did a fine job of 'navigating'!

  4. fine job of writing as always, Steven!
    great top ten list, can't wait to hear what Linda's
    top ten are!!

  5. Once your facial hair turns gray, the WalMart clipon shades will make your Top Ten list for sure!