A&A Challenges Of Mobile Living (300 Days)
End of Week #43
Verde Ranch RV Resort, Camp Verde AZ
Miles traveled since last week's post = 0
Total miles traveled to date = 6,909 with trailer
Not too much to report on our end, as we are doing our best to get through this time just like everyone else in the world right now. I am extremely grateful for each and every moment we have to go outside and social distance ourselves in nature, as I know that is not something everyone is able to do right now. I also know that could change in the near future so we are doing our best to seize every opportunity we have, while of course practicing every precaution.
But in other news - we hit our 10 month marker last Friday! A milestone of 43 weeks, 300 days, and 10 whole months in the RV. And that also means it's that time again, to do another review of the challenges of what it's like to travel full-time in an RV, and review any previous challenges too!
If you missed my previous post about the challenges of mobile living at 240 days, you can check it out here.
CHALLENGES OF MOBILE LIVING - 300 DAYS
With all that is going on in the world, and in our own country right now, it is hard not to focus on and address current issues (challenges) on hand. There are so many unknowns for us, as full-time RVers, and any number of decisions or action steps carried out in the next 2 months could directly impact us in a lot of ways...
I am doing my best to remain hopeful, that by the next time I do a challenges post in another 2 months that things will be completely different. I hope to look back on this time, and on this post, a year from now and remember the challenges, but also the lessons. I want to look back on this and see how it was an opportunity to pause, to rest, to learn, and to discover a whole other side to this lifestyle, and for that matter - life in general. But for now the times are uncertain, and we really don't know how things are going to play out for us.
Having a place to stay
This is a real life issue that thousands and thousands of nomads and full-time travelers are facing right now, not just us. With everyone around the world screaming, "go home", for people like us we don't have a home to go back to - this is our home, on wheels, wherever we park it. With private RV campgrounds, state parks, National Park campgrounds, BLM land (FREE, public land), rest stops, truck stops, gas stations, and other parking lots closing all around the country, it creates all sorts of relocation issues for a lot of us. Thankfully, we are in a privately owned campground right now, have been for the past 5 weeks, and will be for nearly another 3 weeks, but not everyone is as lucky as us right now. And quite frankly at any moment they could close, or be ordered to close, and cause us to be displaced.
Adam and I belong to a multitude of different RV living Facebook groups and there are SO MANY people trying to find a place to stay right now because the Governor in whatever state has shut down whatever state park, private park, or public land available in their area. It makes me frustrated to have effects of that sort take place when something like camping in an RV in the middle of wherever is one of the safest things you could be doing to socially distance yourself and spend time in nature. This is especially true in the state parks systems where spots are extremely spaced out and everyone is self contained because there typically aren't hookups available anyway.
We have already cancelled 7 different stops we were supposed to go to in order to stay where we are at longer, to "stay in one place" as the country orders, and also because in some instances we really did not have a choice as the campground or place we were supposed to go has closed. You might think, what does it matter you have all the time in the world, but in reality that is not the case. As a full-time traveler you are always fighting against weather, change of season, finances and in our case - plans we already had in place for the summer months that we now do not know how they will turn out.
Luckily the RV community is full of kind and caring people who have put together a new group for those that have been evicted from their campgrounds or who have no place to stay, to help them find resources in whatever city they need. I hope this isn't something we end up having to use, but I wouldn't be surprised if I myself start posting for help from others in there in the coming weeks. Strangers are offering up their land, open RV parks are posting their location and prices, and people are doing everything they can to come together for all of us nomads who do not have a permanent place to call home.
Will there be enough supplies
It's one of those things, where a handful of people started panicking buying, which created a ripple effect of people panic buying all over the country, leading us all to a shortage of canned foods, cleaning supplies, and toilet paper. Since day one, we have been stocking up on a lot of essential dry foods, toiletries and even toilet paper, but we aren't able to do that with everything. Our trailer is equipped with a less than half size refrigerator and freezer and can only fit so many food supplies in it. It doesn't matter that we conveniently went to Costco before shit really hit the fan, we were still only able to buy so many cold supplies of food. Soon enough we will run out and we will have to hope that grocery stores in the area are stocked up and available for us to make healthy purchases. Just last week it was a quite apocalyptic scene at Whole Foods in Sedona, where the ENTIRE produce section, fresh, bagged, potatoes, onions, all of it was GONE.
There are also a handful of things we routinely get from Amazon, and Amazon only, that are now no longer available for the foreseeable future and I can't help but get slight anxiety over the fact of needing something and not being able to get it. I find myself mostly worrying about cat food and being able to feed the bengal babes, as they are my priority to look after and care for. Due to so many shortages around the cities we are in we did stock up on cat litter, but with anything we are stocking up on we still only have so much space to store it.
On another note there is also the concern regarding water and electricity resources, and even a place for RV dumping. Most all camping related public restrooms have been shut down, as well as actual gyms, which really only leaves your own rig for an option to shower and use the bathroom. If things were to escalate and we were displaced from a campground with hookups we would have the new challenge of trying to find enough to get by for as long as needed. Our water tank in our RV only holds about 52 gallons of water, which if we were to ration ourselves to only quick rinse showers once a week and try to ration how much we drink we could maybe last a week before we would have to refill again. The same would go for our bathroom before it would need to be emptied, and having enough electricity to charge electronics, run our heat, and power our slides would be an entirely new challenge. This goes without even mentioning the fact that at that point we would be running our stove and fridge on propane and once our 3 tanks ran out we would need more propane supplies too...
State borders & the impact on traveling
Up to this point in time, nothing has severely impacted future travels from city to city, or even state to state, but it is fearful to think of 'what if'. A lot of people in our RV community are worried about state borders shutting down and therefore preventing travel from state to state. If this were to happen we would not have the option to return back to Minnesota or Wisconsin where we have family, even if we wanted to. At that point we would also have to quickly make a judgement call on what state we are in, do we want to continue to be here for an unknown amount of time, or is it best to quickly move to another state. And if we did choose to move to another state we would have to go back to the challenge of finding a place that would take us in or having a place to stay with enough water and electricity resources.
Quarentines, lockdowns, business closures & stay at home orders
It really isn't the biggest change in our lives to have a lot of businesses or restaurants close down during this time, as they aren't something we frequent in the first place. But something we do partake in is a lot is hiking and exploring in nature and if National Parks and other state hiking trails were to shut down then this would extremely limit what we are able to do on a day to day basis. I completely understand that this is still not the end of the world, and given the current circumstances it is a luxury to be able to do these things at all. However I am just shedding light into how things are directly impacting our life on the road.
Other future challenges could include more intense lockdowns and quarantines of cities and states we are in and this is something that we just really don't know how it would affect us. We don't know how this would be handled for people like us that literally do not have a sticks and bricks home and all of that unknown becomes a huge challenge to navigate right now. With talks of martial law, fines for leaving, and police escorts back home, it's hard to imagine how this would be handled with the RV and our displaced lifestyle.
Other NEW challenges:
Going a bit stir crazy… not because of what is going on in the world, but because we have had so many recent days of rain and cooler temps! It feels like the majority of the last several weeks have been like this and that means more time spent inside our wobbly box. When the weather cooperates we like to get outside as much as we can, even to just stretch our legs, but when we are confined inside for days on end it starts to drive us both pretty crazy!
Rain, rain, and more rain... and just so much rain! It's literally raining right now as I type this. We have had more rain during our stay here in central Arizona than we have had in the last 6 months or so. Possibly more than we have ever had, but it's hard to tell after the wild storms we had in South Dakota last August.
Fear of the unknown... I have always been an anxious person, but I've learned a lot of helpful ways to manage it over the years. Without a doubt though this is the most anxiety ridden, uncharted territory I have ever been in and it makes me feel like we are very vulnerable to all of the large changes impacting the country. Up until this point I've felt a lot of excitement and thrill in our travel unknowns, and now I can't help but feel extremely anxious and really nothing else.
& other first world problems... I'm in serious need of a haircut (almost to my wits end here), an eyebrow wax, and a chiropractic adjustment (to remove subluxations and boost my immune system response) and everything within driving distance is closed.
Things we ongoingly continue to work through:
RECYCLING, missing friends and family HARDCORE, being away for celebrations-birthdays-deaths-milestones-dinners-holidays, being away from people we know and people in general, being away, etc….
Previous 240 day challenges, that are STILL a challenge
Yes, some of our challenges from our last post are STILL a challenge. I typically like to offer solutions to previous challenges, but the truth this time around is that we are still dealing with some previously mentioned experiences. The point of all my blog posts is to be honest and open about what we deal with while on this journey, and in this case it is to honestly share that not all challenges can be solved in 2 months time, and sometimes they can't necessarily be solved at all.
Sounds from other RV's at night... I swear sometimes it sounds like I am in an apartment building and I have neighbors on all sides, above and below me. Currently there is a family of four in the row behind us that I can hear every waking minute. I hear their children screaming inside, I hear their trailer shaking, and can even feel it too. I hear neighbors shutting doors, talking on the phone, talking to others, and everything in between!
Constantly changing temperatures... It was one thing when we were on the move, traveling from state to state, but now in central AZ I feel like we have been experiencing all of the seasons over the past month or so. Some days it's chilly and even snows in all the mountains near us, and other days it's so warm it's tank top weather. There hasn't seemed to be much consistency! We have a handy space heater but then it's the challenge of dialing it in just right so that you don't sweat to death at night.
Planning out the year ahead... I went into 2020 with a pretty good understanding of our plans for the entire year, and even booked out our places to stay for the first 3 months of the year right away early January. With all that is going on right now we aren't able to make any plans (& even have to cancel future ones) and we have no idea when that will change. This has already impacted one trip with friends in Santa Fe, NM and could also very well impact another trip in April where friends were supposed to meet us in California. It makes things stressful to not know where we will be when and at what point we will see loved ones along the way. And as an avid planner, it makes things even more stressful to not be able to work out a route for the future.
Things that are still NOT a challenge another 60 days into it
Let's see where the world is at in another 7 days, and I will see what I come up with...
*Currently under construction and paused at this time.*
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