Saturday, January 31, 2009

Driving Dirty and Proud of It!

I'm not a total slob. In fact, I appreciate reasonable attempts to attain some form of neatness, even when I'm the one doing the cleaning.

But I have to claim the title of "dirtiest RV in the southwest." And I just don't know what to do about it.

Tillie got a good cleaning back at the end of September, let's see, 4 months and 4,000 miles ago. Why would she be looking so dirty?!

I've washed her by myself before, and then said real bad words when it rained, amazingly in dry climates like Las Cruces in February! It usually rains the next day after the Tillie bath--a good way to break a drought!

So I'm going to keep driving-dirty. I will be proud. I'm not one of the pristine RVs that look like the maid, butler and valet came out to clean the specks of dirt off before anyone sees it. Nope, we're going to be the dirtiest little RV in the whole country.

On another note, I am sort of adept at electrical stuff, having taken a wiring course back in my lighting showroom management days. But I was a bit flummoxed yesterday when my GFI outlet tripped, not why it did, but how to get it back into the working column.

Have you ever noticed how small the writing is on those things? Reset? Test? Well, having discovered the breakers for AC and the fuses (which I've worked with before) for DC, I figured it was a slam dunk for flipping the breaker but the reset button wouldn't reset. Hmmm....

So I got down on the floor and again looked at the breakers, inconveniently located under my bed, and fiddled around, and lo and behold--it works. I'm not asking why.

As I am a month into this 4th year of my travels, I smile at the stress that I let myself experience my first time out...worried about whether or not I had full hook-ups, if the park had a gate, how long I could go without dumping, etc. I even sort of cared if I was dirty.

Now, nah! Whatever.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Better Than Sleeping Outside

I knew I was spoiled. After the summer of being comfortably parked at a friend's in the Chicago suburbs and 2 months of all the comforts (water, electric, easy access to dump, great view, quiet) in GA, I left last week, all set for a 4-month stint south and westward.

My travel is also my work, so I have a plan, albeit loose one, as to where I'm going. Some of my travels are bound to include boondocking, the art of living without the hook-ups we all usually love. Boondocking has advantages--the freedom to park just about anywhere, and CHEAP!. And it has disadvantages, especially if weather becomes an issue.

Tonight it will be an issue for me, a chilly-wimp. It's going to drop to about 20 here in northern Florida. I'm boondocking, which means relying on a noisy, inefficient generator in the morning to kick on my otherwise noisy (but genny drowns it out) propane-sucking furnace. I will rarely kick on genny and furnace other than the morning.

I'd love some good advice on how to minimize the discomfort besides the obvious--dress warmly. My down comforter works fine once I get under it. It's times like now as I watch my inside thermometer drop to the low 60s and beyond that I'd like to have some simple way of generating a bit of warmth while I work on my laptop.

My reality check is my work with homeless people over the last 23 years. I know lots of folks are out in lots colder conditions, lacking the basics I so take for granted. So, my complaining has a caveat--I'm whining about something that isn't even the beginning of suffering. Wimp!