March winds have been blowing and my mind has turned toward my circle tour this summer. My little motorhome, Ecovision, is waiting patiently in storage about six miles away as I plan our 2012 travels. The photograph above is from the very first morning after I bought her and I am remembering with such fondness how I came to own her.
I bought her on eBay then rented a one-way car from Michigan to Vermont to pick her up. I had never owned nor driven a motorhome, nor was I experienced at mountain driving, but this didn’t deter me. The owners spent a couple hours with me on a Sunday morning teaching me how everything works (and yes, you are right, pretty much in one ear and out the other). It was trial by fire as I bounced along winding roads for many hours getting used to new noises and sensations on my way home.
It was late October in 2009 and there was only one campground left open in New York between me and my home in Michigan. I arrived after dark just before the campground closed for the night. I didn’t back in because I didn’t know what I was doing. There were only three motorhomes in the entire campground and I asked one RVer to help me plug her in. That night I nearly froze because, as I later learned, the temperature went down to 22 degrees and a heat pump is only good to 40. Brrr. So I slept in all my clothes in a down sleeping bag with even my hat and coat on until the sun came up. But you know, when I finally got up and walked outside, it was worth everything–the entire purchase price, the hour after hour of driving, the shivering much of the night–for just that very first morning. There was steam rising from a slow-moving river sparkling in early morning magic light. The only sound was the gurgle of water and crinkle of golden leaves. It smelled gloriously of freshly oxygenated air. It truly does not get better than this. Everything ever since has just been a bonus.
Since then I’ve upgraded Ecovision to nearly new condition, taken various multi-day RV courses, driven to rallies and conferences, and gotten some miles under my belt. She’s a 1999 American Cruiser and about 21 feet long. She’s tiny compared to many of my friends’ RVs, but I love her. She has a little kitchen, an even smaller bathroom, a couch that I sleep on, and a two-person dinette. She gets about 14 miles per gallon and is easy to drive and park. She’s just about right. My dog, Henry, loves to travel in her so much that just saying the word RV sends him to the front door in a tizzy. We have fun. He rides snugged in a harness attached to the seat belt in the chair next to me and usually sleeps there, too. I’m going to have a few more things done next month to get her ready for the travel season then we’ll be good to go. Can hardly wait!
I plan to leave in early August. In the meantime I will be fleshing out the resource pages here and share various plans of where I’ll stay and who I’ll be interviewing. So stay tuned, and as readership grows I am looking forward to learning of special places and people that readers think that I shouldn’t miss.
Thanks for your support, Jane. Yes, takes a great deal of work so dreams can “just happen”. It was tough having to wait a full year to get going, but needed another travel season in my motorhome under my belt before heading for especially the north shore of the big lake. Still a novice in terms of my motorhome, but ready for the challenge!
Karen, so glad to hear you’re gearing up to make this dream come true. Funny how dreams don’t “just happen,” isn’t it?