So many people have been asking how our trip is going so far. As I am writing, I am curled up in the king-sized bed in my sister’s guest room with my two sleeping pups and a cold bottle of seltzer water by my side. My laundry is tumbling in the dryer downstairs and Heather is FaceTiming with her mom. It’s heaven.
This has NOT been our experience thus far. Life in a tiny 15-foot camper is a bit different – there is so much to learn. I told my sister I was stressed out the other day when we were driving and she was like ABOUT WHAT, YOU ARE UNEMPLOYED?! Fine fine fine! Ha!
Obviously, I feel extremely fortunate to be in a place to travel for a year. That said, it did take a lot of work to “detach” from our former life, and every day of traveling takes a lot of effort! We have so much to learn, but so far I’ve realized that everything is slower when space is limited and everything you need to live moves with you from place to place.
So, if you want to laugh along with our comedy of errors, here’s a little glimpse at a few of our “incidents”:
When we were packing to leave Asheville, it was 85 degrees. Our first night in Kentucky it was in the 40s. We thought that our AC unit also had a heat setting, but come to find out we were wrong – shocker! That down comforter that I vacuum-packed in the back of the truck for future use came right out! Also, our friends perma-loaned us a propane heater we used nightly in KY – thank goodness! Once we could hit a Walmart (a necessary evil while in rural areas) we quickly purchased an electric one so as to not burn through propane – we pay for electric in the cost of a campsite, but propane ain’t cheap!
So when we wake up the first morning, Gertie is DYING to jump down on the floor. I can’t find my glasses or jacket but I’m paranoid that that little stubborn puppy will pee the moment her feet hit the floor. Heather is sick and not getting out of bed anytime soon, so I clutch 15 pounds of wriggling insanity under my arm while I pull on my boots with one hand. It’s raining, I don’t have a poop bag and my glasses are in the truck, but she does her biz. I toss Gertie back in the camper, grab a bag and blindly search for the poop. No trash can. I stash the used bag under the camper so it’s out of the rain until I find a suitable trash receptacle (I guess this is something I need?!). I find the keys, get my glasses and get myself back inside out of the rain. What would be a 30-second task at home – open back door, let dog out – took 5 stressful minutes in our tiny space.
The second, most-epic moment was when we emulated the scene most everyone references when talking about “trailer” living – apologies for the crass-ness, but it’s too accurate:
We had a bit of a sewer back up situation and were thankfully able to laugh our way through it. And employ some bleach to make the bathroom acceptable to use again!
So clearly, some adjustment is needed, and as my dad pointed out we are NOT helping ourselves by staying at my sister’s for 2 weeks. But right now, time with the people we love is at the top of the list, and we are trying to help out with childcare and spend some quality time together. At the moment, that feels just as important as adjusting to tiny, mobile living!