Saturday, June 11, 2011

Calm After the Storm...So to Speak

After all the drama (the in my head drama) that built up prior to taking Olivia out yesterday, I find myself wrung out today.  I think that I'm drained emotionally.  I'm also relieved to know that I can get under the bridge that was so in my way when it came to taking off in Olivia.  Here's the bridge again...

I also have to admit that the I'm probably exhausted from the first outing because I was on hyper alert all day yesterday.  There's so much to learn just driving down the street in a motorhome.  For me it started with the bridge, then getting gas and having to turn around in a gas station because I was going in the wrong direction for accessing the diesel pump.  And on and on and on.  I'm sure most of you know what I'm talking about.  At the time I wasn't aware of how hyper alert I was but I feel it now.  

Then there's the concern and disappointment about my dog.  He was going to be my buddy going down the road and now I'm not sure if he'll be able to go.  This morning he was going to inspect the upper part of my backyard and he wasn't able to climb up the rocks like he usually does.  Just to the right of the Japanese Maple is where he usually goes.  

I looked out the kitchen window just in time to see him picking himself up off the ground.  It breaks my heart to see that happen to him.  

The friend I was going to visit in Eastern Washington has some medical issues going on, so I won't be getting with her next week or the week after, like we were thinking.  So, I think I'll tentatively set a date for June 20th to go to Clarkston, WA.  

I think when I park at my first RV park I'll find out that the driving was the easy part.  When I arrive I'll have to deal with electrical, leveling, propane (aargh), etc., etc.  Because Olivia is parked in storage I don't have my water tanks filled, so I can't use the bathroom yet.  The paperwork on my refrigerator suggests running it 24 hours before taking off but I don't have access to electrical power. There's probably a bigger picture here I need to look at but I think I'm stuck in tunnel vision, tunnel vision brought on by fear of the unknown.  I also know that it will never be as hard again as it was the first time.  

I was thinking of going outside for some fresh air but it's only 66〫, cloudy, gray and windy.  Hard to believe the first day of summer is next week.  

Sunshine and warmth please,



  1. It's always a little scary the first time. I think you'll find that hooking up to electric and water is pretty straightforward. Most refrigerators are dual powered by both electric and propane. We start ours on propane the night before we leave and run it on propane while we are on the road. It switches to electric automatically when we plug in. Since Olivia is in storage, you may not be able to run the propane. Be sure your coach is fairly level if you are going to start the frig. Don't worry, you'll be an old pro in no time.

  2. You are right, first time is always worst!

    How is the dogs quality of life otherwise? What happens if he get really bad while you are gone? I know these are hard questions. Sometimes we have to make decisions we would rather put off.

    Now I will MYOB

    I love labs.

  3. Just take it one step at a time, if u try to look at everything at once u will freak yourself out. I just take one problem or issue at a time, else i would be crazy!!!!

  4. Jeana... I know that wrung out feeling after a stressful day in the coach. Nothing is coming to you as second nature. Everything is so new so you have to stay hyper alert which is draining.

    I think you may have read my blog about my Siberian Husky. She was going to be my companion while on the road but didn't travel well. I had rescued her about 2 years ago and intended to find her a good home. Then I fell in love with her. I gave it a shot and tried to see if she'd make a good travel buddy but it didn't work out. She is now with a great family who can give her what I couldn't. I miss her terribly. Don't know what to tell you about the situation with your sweet Lab. I'm sure you'll do the right thing in the end.

    Dealing with the electrical, leveling, propane, dumping, water hookups, etc. will only come easy to you once you've done it a few times.

    You say you don't have access to electrical power... but don't you have a generator? I run my generator to cool my refrigerator before leaving on a trip. I've learned that for every hour I run the generator I burn 1 gallon of gas so that's about $4.00 an hour.

    Fear of the unknown is normal. Try to relax even though it is hard to do. Here again, it will all get much easier the more you do it. I suggest taking many, many short trips to run through all of the steps necessary to set up at campgrounds or boondocking and to break down to get ready to go back home. Practice, practice, practice.

  5. Take a deep breath. You'll get through all of this. It gets easier as time goes by. :)

  6. It does get easier each time you do it, mostly because your confidence level gets higher. Even after over 6 years being out here, we still have a list that we both go over each and every time we leave a site, which is almost daily since we love to travel.

    Deep breaths and just relax, it will all be ok!

  7. one day soon you will wonder what all the 'worrying was about'! for your 'pooch' is very difficult to watch our beloved four legged 'kids' get older!..some decisions are harder than others and I know you will manage to get through all the worries in no time!

  8. Jeana,
    Take some short trips to near by RV Parks or camp grounds. You don't work so you can go during the week rather than a weekend. This will give you some practice and you will soon get to know your rig and what you need to do.
    I know you get lots of rain where you live but rain in a camper is very peaceful to me. Bring a book or puzzle or what ever it is you like to do. Enjoy Olivia one step at a time.

    Sorry about your dog. Some times I think about getting one and then I think of all the heartache of losing one. Hope you can find some one to sit with him once in a while so you can go. I know you will make the right choice for him.

  9. Don't worry about any of that. I got my RV out of storage, put food in with ice to keep it cool until the fridge cooled down. I ran it on propane, it automatically chooses for itself.

    As far as the electric and all that - after you are in the park, ask someone to help, that's what I did. A camp host or nearby camper.

    I camped for four days with NO water - luckily I had two 5-gallon jugs of water, and a case of water bottles. It worked fine, but it's easier to have water in the tank.

    Before you know it, you'll have it all down. Get some books like Woodall's RV Owner's Handbook, or RVs for Dummies - they answer all those questions.

  10. Jackie & Molly & The LittlesJune 12, 2011 at 10:04 AM


    I've been following your blog for some time now. I just had to comment on your lab. I truly know what you are going through because our Molly is 13 now. I love her and can't imagine her not being here with us. I sometimes wonder if we are being selfish because I know she is in pain sometimes and she struggles getting up and down. I think we will know when her time comes just like you will know. For now, we are putting our dreams on hold because we know she just isn't up to traveling.

    As far as the water/electric/propane stuff - I think anyone nearby would be willing to help you out. Don't let fear paralyze you! You've owned a motorhome and a 5th wheel, you can do this!!