Header image  
Join Us On Our Trek Across America  
  HOME ::   
2004 Random Thoughts
Over time we'll note some of our silly, random thoughts that come to us during our trip...
Some great quotes we've come across:
  • It's my life, and its now or never, I ain't gonna live forever, I just want to live while I'm alive.  ~ Jon Bon Jovi
  • Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.  ~Ben Franklin
  • Remember, there is no such thing as bad weather, just inadequate clothing.  ~Oregon Coast Association
  • Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play and pray in, where Nature may heal and cheer and give strength to body and soul alike.  ~John Muir
You might be a redneck if...  (sorry, but we've been in some rather 'rural' areas and you just can't help coming up with redneck jokes!)
  • ...your dog rides on the bow of your boat, while its in the bed of your pickup truck
  • ...you ride your ATV while it's sitting in the bed of your pickup truck
  • ...you ride in your boat while it's being towed down the road (at least there was no water skier!)
  • ...your RV is bigger than your house
  • ...you have more belongings outside your house than inside
  • ...you live in your RV, which is parked next to your house
  • ...most of the vehicles in your yard can't move

On RVing:  (answers to common questions)
  • In Port Angeles, WA we upgraded our anti-sway bar and our shocks.  Just wanted to mention that we have seen a world of a difference.  We no longer feel the "big push" from large trucks when they pass us.
  • Driving an RV can be a little challenge because not only do you have to look in front of you (to make sure the lanes/spaces are wide enough to accommodate 102” mirror to mirror; and high enough to accommodate 11’6”), but you also drive looking to your sides and behind you frequently (to make sure your back wheels are making the turn or that your towed vehicle will clear the car you’re passing). Some funny stories on driving:
    • Made a right at an intersection in order to make a quick left into a gas station and try to beat the cars coming to the intersection, when Andy realizes the gas pump canopy is only 11’6” high. No extra space! Tried to veer around the canopy (note: you can’t back up when you’re towing) and practically drove down the side walk to avoid losing our roof and a/c unit to the canopy. No, we didn’t get any gas there!
    • Everyone knows California driving is high-risk. Imagine it in a 49’ RV. Well, we didn’t have nerves of steel to tow on “the 5” and thank goodness we didn’t try. Changing lanes was enough of a problem in either vehicle. California ’s highways have a tendency to stop lanes without much warning. I drove ahead and using walkie-talkies would radio to Andy in the RV when lanes were ending. Once, we lost about 3 lanes back to back, constantly having to move over. Andy had one car who just didn’t want to give him the lane. With a concrete barrier fast approaching – Andy decided the bigger vehicle has the right-of-way and had to just take the lane.
    • Living in Florida , we hadn’t had to use multiple gears in our vehicles for awhile. Out west it is common to drive with over-drive off, or go into 2 nd or 1 st gear. And the parking brake is actually being used in our car as well.
    • Switchbacks are fun. Maintaining your lane on a tight curve (usually with sheer drop-offs) is quite hair-raising at times. Especially when there is a tractor-trailer on your butt or coming right at you…on the turn…trying desperately to stay in HIS lane.
  • RVing Definitions:
    • Boondocking: camping without any hook-ups. No sewer, no water, no electricity. The campground may have a dump station or central water. Or, it may not.
    • Blue Highways: state highways (recommended traveling instead of Interstates since they’re generally more scenic)
    • Red Roads: dirt or gravel roads
    • “Toad”: a nick-name for a towed-vehicle.
  • RVing is not "camping" - it's too convenient
  • Warranty work and/or leaks - expect them :).  You have a brand new house that moves down the road.  Things are going to move or shift.
  • A great quote on maintenance:  There are only two maintenance items you need.  One is duct tape, for those things that move and shouldn't.  The other is WD-40, for those things that don't move and should. 
  • Weight is everything in an RV.  You have to consider the weight before purchasing something new, or deciding where to place it in the RV.  It's a constant battle to keep the vehicle weighed safely.

On Travelling:

  • Staying in a place for only days at a home can be a little unsettling at times.  It's a challenge to remember how to get around town, finding grocery stores, gas stations, internet cafes or libraries.  Haircuts have also been a little issue - you get spoiled by your hairdresser at home who knows your hair and what it can and can't do.
  • We try to "shake-up" our travelling by alternating our stays at state parks/national parks then private campgrounds.  Private campgrounds will offer a variety of services:  swimming pools, jacuzzi, WIFI or dial-up service, laundry facilities, book swaps, water/sewer/electric hook-ups, picnic tables, etc.  State Parks, National Forest Campgrounds, Nat'l Parks usually have beautiful, natural settings but limited services.  Some may not have sewer hookups or even water/electric.  It's all about 'location'. 
  • Camping Rates vary from $10/night to $50 plus/night.  You can save with weekly rates or by using a discount club.  We belong to Good Sam which gives us 10% off and we belong to Passport America which gives us 50% off.  Both have helped us out a lot.  Our budget is $20/night.
  • We try to keep our travelling days short, preferably a half of a day.  That allows us time to break camp, set up camp, and learn about the new area.  Maybe even do something fun or physical the day we arrive. 

What do we miss from our home now that we are travelling?

  • our reclining chairs and sofa (the reclining camp-chairs aren't quite the same)
  • our large and extra-soft king-sized bed
  • a garbage disposal
  • not a whole lot!

What do we miss from South Florida?

  • our friends of course!
  • Scuba Diving
  • Kayak-Diving
  • biking with Melissa on A1A
  • warm, sunny days
  • warm, warm water

Let's talk about "dry heat" for a minute now that we've been out west and in the desert for awhile:

  • it's still HOT
  • our skin is cracked
  • our noses bleed
  • my hair has so much static electricity it's hard to brush
  • it's HOT, oh I said that already
  • on a positive note, you do get some relief in the shade or at night it can cool off about 10 degrees