Why are we doing this? This is the question that came about after my wife and I began to examine our life. For several years we had been tossing around the idea of finding a new area to relocate to. While neither of us were unhappy with our current situation, living in a historic neighborhood near the Baltimore Harbor, our life had become predictable. I was a real estate agent and Alayne an accountant; jobs that we had become weary of. Our life felt programmed and not one we had consciously chosen. We, like most people, enjoy traveling for the recreation and growth found in the process. Also like most people, we were confined to short time periods and money was often an issue.
During a 2012 trip to the Pacific Northwest I began to notice RVs parked along the side of the road in some of the most picturesque places. After seeing these RVs in the same spot for a few days I began to wonder “what are they doing?” It struck me that these were not simply parked vehicles, but in fact homes, possibly even full-time. After visiting Portland and Seattle we knew it was time for a change. This change most likely meant moving somewhere, but finding a new place to live with only a couple of weeks of vacation and travel expenses could take a lot of time and money. I mentioned to Alayne that we should buy an inexpensive used RV and travel around the country, taking our time to find that new place and have an adventure. I expected for her to balk at the idea and have immediate reasons why it was impractical and should not be done, i.e. jobs, house, money, pets etc. To my surprise she said with almost no hesitation, “okay.”
Often big decisions come with a fair share of fear, but something about this felt right. The researching began immediately and I found a wealth of information, largely through blogs of others who had done the same. The initial plan was to take year off and do this, then we scaled it back to three months and finally settled on four. We decided it would be best to take a trial run to make sure we and our marriage could handle the stress of a small space and life on the road. However, it is in our minds that if all goes well, we will do this indefinitely and work seasonally and/or workamping as needed.
Full-time RV living does take a significant up front investment. Like anything in the RV world, it runs the gamut from modest to super luxury. We are on the more modest end. We are fortunate to have the ability to do this but keeping costs at a minimum is a priority. I keep reminding Alayne that by doing this we are taking a vow of simplicity. Fortunately we are both so pleased to have come up with this idea at all, and removing ourselves from the all consuming “rat race” that we are gleeful to give up some comforts to really experience life. Life is short. This is our way of “seizing the day!”
Update 10/27/14: We did decide to live full-time in our RV. More than a year and a half later and 15,000 miles our adventure continues.