Before heading out on the road on my year-long adventure, I heard similar comments from many people when I told them about my plans to travel around the country in an RV. Many people told me, “I’ve always wanted to do that;” “That’s the way to see the country;” “That would be my favorite way to travel;” and the all-time favorite, “That’s always been my dream.”
That’s when it came to me. I am not just living one of my dreams, but I am living this dream for many others. Many people aren’t able to travel like this because they still have family and work obligations. They have children to take care of, and homes and businesses. They still have parents that need their time and attention.
Being in a unique position – without children, without parents anymore, without a home, and without 9 – 5 jobs – my husband, Jim, and I are free to travel, creating work and making money along the way. Of course, it’s also a test for our marriage of 30 something years. The issues of most couples seem to become amplified in the smaller space of RV living. How much time to spend together, and apart? How do we still manage to have our own interests and activities? And how do we juggle our work schedules? How do we honor each other’s personal needs? The list goes on.
So far, I haven’t met any working couples in the RV world. Most of them at our first stop on the treasure coast in Florida seem to be retired, and escaping the colder, northern climates. They seem to still have homes to go back to, and children, and grandchildren who are still a big part of their lives. In time, I am sure I will meet others who are living the full-time RV life, and learn how they manage all of the above.
My full-time RV life began two days after Christmas. In the fall, I was living part of the time in the RV, and the rest of the time in my family home which my sister is now buying. I would do work, cook meals, and shower in the family home, and then go into the RV at night to watch TV, and sleep. Slowly, I moved my belongings into the RV, while I stored the rest in a permanent shed in the backyard of my family home. Just after Christmas, I made the final plans to leave, hoping that I was bringing what I thought I might need for this adventure on the road.
The New Year of 2015 began for me on the road. Two days after Christmas, I began my journey, heading south. It was a quiet start. The day that Jim and I were leaving New England, my throat felt scratchy, and then I lost my voice altogether for about 3 days. The first two weeks in Florida, I was recovering, and still have a lingering cough. I felt like I was continuing the clearing and letting go of the past year through my physical body. I also felt like being silent so my wish came true.
Living the awakened life on the road is different from staying in one place. As we drove from New England to Florida, we stayed in different hotels, and one night, in the Walmart parking lot, surrounded by other RVers who were also making that journey south. We were literally joining a flock of snowbirds, escaping the cold, wintry weather of the north.
The flock of birds multiplied as we entered the southern states. In Virginia, I began to see more RVs on the highway. They came from all states including the provinces of Canada. We passed people from Minnesota, Michigan, Kansas, Iowa, and many from New Jersey and New York. The driving also seemed easier as we left the weather-beaten roads of the northern states behind. The highway drivers seemed to spread out more, and the rest areas became larger and more expansive with plenty of room to park alongside the trucks.
The day before New Year’s Eve, we arrived at our first destination on the treasure coast of Florida. The former owners of the RV had referred the park to us. Not personally knowing any other parks, we followed their advice. For almost four weeks now, we’ve been living in a gated community of RVers – all shapes and sizes, but mainly the big rigs are here. Some are here for the whole winter, and have personalized their living spaces with lawn furniture, plants, hanging lanterns, and painted signs with their names, and funny slogans.
The view from my RV window is one of palm trees, and an over-grown woods behind the border of the park. Once and a while, a cow lets out a bellow in the woods. There are birds that hover around the trees, and a squirrel runs along the fence. These animals have been part of my yard for the past month, but this coming week-end, we’re getting ready to head further south to the next stop on our journey, near Fort Lauderdale.
I’ve enjoyed my month here in this little seacoast town of Fort Pierce, Florida. I’ve spent time with family and friends, visited the beaches, walked along the marinas, enjoyed the shops and theatre downtown, and hung out at the Tiki bar on the wharf; but now, it’s time to fold up the caravan and move along.
The journey continues, and as a sign at the Kennedy Space Center read, “The adventure has only just begun.” Until we meet again on the road less traveled. (Except in Florida, it seems to be a road that many are traveling in the winter.)
Happy New Year from the east coast of Florida.
By Donna Fisher-Jackson, M.A. © 2015
Donna Fisher-Jackson, M.A., CHT is a Certified Hypnotherapist, Western Astrologer and Author who counsels clients through her business of Iris Holistic Counseling Services on the road at http://www.DonnaFisherJackson.com. She has published the self-help book, The Healing Path of the Romantic: Type Four of the Enneagram Personality Type System and a novel, Clara & Irving: A Love Story of Past Lives, based on the true story of a Romantic. Both books are available in a print and Kindle edition on Amazon.com. ♥