I was on a consulting contract in Florida when I came across a copy of Full-time RVing. I thought it was interesting and sent a copy to my wife, Darleen. After the contract ended, Darleen agreed that we should sell the house and try full-time RVing for a couple of years.
We attended an RV Show in Pasadena, California, and I mentioned to an RV dealer that we were going to try full-time RVing. A little lady overheard our conversation and led us to a booth manned by a tall fellow. They both told us we needed to join their club, and we signed up on the spot as Escapees members. The little lady and the tall fellow were Kay and Joe Peterson! That was in 1993, and an RV is still our only home today.
It didn’t take us long to find out that it costs less to live in a fifth-wheel trailer than a fully paid-for house, and federal bureaucrats consider us homeless, so we are free to go anywhere without leaving home.
– Jerry (and Darlene) Hatch #28970
RVing Dabbler’s Dilemma
I am a dabbler, a retired art teacher and published author nestled into a 26-foot, class-C RV with two cats and a dog. In writer’s mode, I need the essentials: a digital recorder, laptop, printer, camera, legal pads and pens. But I’m also a dabbler in drawing, painting, beading and fiber arts, basket weaving, sculpture and a collector of found treasures. Storage is haphazard, and hunting for my materials was frustrating until I got organized.
In the rig’s basement, I carry totes for treasures, necessary supplies, a collapsible easel, a camp stool, out-of-season clothes and tools.
I removed the mattresses in the cab-over to make space for under-bed storage boxes for shoe boxes of supplies. A tote tray holds maps, an atlas and brochures.
Two plastic drawer units are anchored on a TV shelf with bungee cords and rubberized shelf liner. Railing added to another shelf corrals reference books. The nook below houses my computer and printer.
As a solo traveler, I don’t need much eating space, so the small booth table serves as a desk with a plastic drawer unit for drawing materials, a travel-art-junk journal bound with birch bark and two art on-the-go bags.
I’ve written a book titled, “Dare to Dabble.” It includes helpful hints for creative writers and other crafty people.
– Carol V. Weishampel, EdD #80679
Along with our other pets, we travel full-time in our travel trailer with a silkie chicken named Brienne of Tarth (from a character on the Game of Thrones TV series).
Since she has always been an “inside chicken,” she adapted well to the nomad lifestyle. She wears a diaper while roaming free inside the RV, and she has an out-door pen as well.
– Aaron and Hayden Hall #131859
The articles on RV hitches in the September/October 2017 issue reminded me of an experience I had with my truck and trailer.
While fueling my truck at a service station, I noticed a dark spot in the fifth-wheel assembly. Upon closer inspection, I discovered that the pin that connects the trailer to the truck was about to drop out. The cotter pin holding the join pin must have worn through or fell out.
The fix was simple enough. I dropped the landing gear down, raised the bow enough to take the pressure off of the trailer, hammered the wayward pin back into place and inserted a new cotter pin.
Now when I stop or fuel up, I always check my hitch.
– Bill Bowser #77734
Paragliding in the Park
I’m a single, 64-year-young, full-time RVer and a new Escapees member. My hobby usually generates a great deal of interest at each campground I visit. I fly a powered paraglider (PPG) that is basically a “go-cart with a propeller on the back,” and 33 square meters of sail (glider) overhead. With the addition of a second level to my trailer (above my car) and a winch, I’m able to bring my PPG along RVing.
Many campgrounds have a nearby field that provides ample space for takeoff and landing. The PPG doesn’t require a license, and training is usually accomplished within five to seven days. It’s quite an exciting experience motoring in the air and surveying the countryside below, a vantage that most campground visitors will never see. Due to the PPG’s glide ratio (6:1—six feet forward for every one foot of descent), an engine failure is more an inconvenience than a crisis.
Although I’m fairly new to the sport, I’ve now flown in California, Texas, Michigan, Missouri and Tennessee. I plan to add Quartzite, Arizona, to my list in January 2018 at the convergence, and I can’t wait.
– Fred Copping #138494