Planning the Big Trip

I have been planning this RVan trip for years and I have about 1 more year to go until I actually depart for my 13,000 mile adventure.  I will be traveling East toward Florida from California and stop and see many people along the way. Then North up to Nova Scotia, stopping at places I have always wanted to see and some I have already seen so I can visit again. Then I will make a sharp right and head thru Canada to Alaska, and finally back south to California again, if I leave in March and catch some Spring weather as well as Giants’ Spring training, then I can spend part of April in Florida and head North so I can get there by May, in June I can travel Canada and spend July and August in Alaska, before heading back to California in September. If the weather cooperates this trip should be doable.

So really, why embark on such a major journey, on my own, at my age? Well, its not like I have never RV’d before, this will be my 5th or 6th trip and my second major journey alone. When I was in my 20s I went to Europe and traveled from California to Greece, the European part via train, thru France, Italy, Yugoslavia and finally into beautiful Greece. I was gone for weeks and had a very spectacular time of it too, its so easy to meet people and make friends when I travel solo.  As a teenager, I took off and hitchiked across the miles for many months. At age 25, I bought a little Dodge camper van and took my sister with me as far as LA and then continued onto Oklahoma, working at fairs and carnivals in most states. Then I did it again with a dude in a step van and traveled far and wide towing our little camera booth, which was very lucrative. Eventually we bought a nice Fireball trailer that we hitched up for a season on the road, I came home when my Mom became seriously ill and when she died, I took myself on that solo Europe trip to grieve and be reborn.

For the next few decades I lived in Hawaii, enjoying the beautiful beaches, jungles and making lifelong friends. I traveled to Europe again and to the Mainland countless times.

I was longing to return permanently to the Mainland though and came up with a plan my new husband finally agreed to, buy a 5th wheel and travel the country, work where we could enjoy the sights, experiences and sounds.  And so we did, we bought a great Holiday Rambler on ebay and a big F350 dually to pull our “Honu” and spent a year traveling and seeing about 26 states, I also got to visit some important family history places in Maryland and South Carolina which truly brought my family’s genealogy to life.  Walking in the footsteps of my ancestors became a huge thrill, one I desire to duplicate.

So I do feel pretty experienced at this type of avant garde life, I want to burn as little gas as possible so I will buy the smallest RVan I can find that is equipped with a restroom, shower as well as kitchen and bed and can run electrical power on the rooftop solar for off grid camping and boondocking  with some extra storage for my guitar and art supplies. I will cut out all extraneous material items and use the least number of clothing items in my life I believe, I’m thinking 10 outfits and 1 stove pot.  I can pare down to almost nothing and have the blessing of my husband who will join me on the road when he can also. I have picked out a theme for my RVan, which will be vintage Hawaiiana. That should give my RVan some visual interest and keep me on the lookout for interesting  but very specific collectibles, which will keep my buying down to a dull roar, always a challenge for me.

I have narrowed down the sytle of RVan I will purchase soon, it will have a sideways toilet with room for shower as an all in one if necessary, I would rather not have the type that is in the hallway but 0nce I find one I like I will make the leap. My big adventure is planned for 2018, I have time to find the right used RVan. I like the ones that are about 19′ long. A V6 will probably give me best mileage, but will it get up the Rocky Mountains too?

I will inventory every single item I plan to take with me, because everything will need a place to ‘be’. I know how important this is in a tiny RVan. Stuff is an important first lesson all VanLife people must learn.

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