Sunday, August 28, 2011

Test Drive Today

I test drove the 2005 Monaco Cayman today and I think it went pretty well. I did notice how noisy it was in the cab and I wasn't too crazy about that. The salesman made a point of stressing that the engine noise was in the back but it was the noise in the cab that was disturbing.  The front edge of the seat was out further than the bend in my knees and that wasn't comfortable. The mirrors were fantastic and really made a difference.  It has cameras that turn on with the turn signals, but I had more luck with the mirrors.  I imagine the mirrors would work better in traffic, like on the freeway.  I do think I could get used to driving a Class A.  I almost asked to go around the block a second time but I knew I wasn't going to buy, so that wouldn't have felt right.

Fortunately, the salesman who went with me was an expert on diesels and the man I dealt with yesterday remained behind.  The salesman from yesterday made  sexist remarks to me more than once and I let him know I wasn't ok with it.  Today he called me a girl.  I don't think I qualify as a girl at 63 and I really resent being called one.  I won't get on my soapbox about women being called girls and men being called men.  Sorry, my feminist side is showing.

I really appreciate all the comments on yesterday's post.  I've been on the internet today trying to find jacknife couches and I'm not having much luck. Lynne, another View owner, happens to have that type of couch in her View so I guess they're out there.  Maybe I'll call the people I bought her from tomorrow and see if they can help me.  I think that might help, temporarily.

Those of you out there with diesel pushers?  Would you go back to gas?  The moronic salesman yesterday said that no owners of diesel pushers ever go back.  Is he right?  Oh, another thing I liked about the one I drove can fill the gas tank up from either side of the coach.  That is slick.  Having had a problem more than once with diesel being on the wrong side for me, I would really like that.

Oh...before I forget.  I found a Class A motorhome in San Diego last October.  I know I wrote about it because I was thinking of flying down to check it out.  It's the motorhome that is the reason for the name of my blog...four windows with a view...

This is not the one in San Diego, but one I saw up here a few years ago.  I love the floor plan.  Well, the one in San Diego is still available!!  My first thought since it's still available is...what's wrong with it?  The price hasn't dropped any more which really surprises me.  Maybe I'll go check it out after I get down to Tucson.

I have so many things to think about based on a lot of the comments I got from yesterday's post. One of them is pulling a toad.  If I get a Class A I'll probably have to and I'm not sure I want to.  I need to be 90-100% sure that I truly want to full-time before I spend the money on a bigger motorhome. Right now I think Olivia is great because I can go pretty much anywhere with her.  However, I don't know where I want to go and I need to figure that out.  Do I just want to take weekend jaunts?  Why weekends?  I'm retired, I can go during the week.  I'm hoping that it will make more sense when I'm in Tucson.  I won't have a house to worry about and I can take off whenever I want.  Maybe I'll really get the RVing bug and never look back.

I do know that I want to take advantage of my Harvest Hosts membership and check out wineries.  Maybe that will be my focus when I get to the Southwest.  Sounds like fun to me.

Loving the sunshine,



  1. You know I'm not a big fan of RV salesmen. Women are not different than men when it comes to driving a class A or any other RV. We all drive the same. But women are probably better at it.

  2. I hope I never called you "girl"...i use that term sometimes as in "Hey girl"...I guess my generic term for a man would be "Hey guy"...Anyway,,,,The one and only thing I would suggest is wait until you get to Arizona...unless you absolutely want to go through a dealer there are SO many motor homes for sale here...lots of nice somewhat newer ones that people used only a couple of times and decided it was not for them. We live one mile from the Espcapees Rv ranch....I drove around the other day...there were three that I saw that had for sale signs in them...(they had a perm place in the Escapes Ranch) many people have decided rv'n is just not for them ...especially when gas got high again... you can't go wrong by waiting and making sure your next one (if there is a next one) is just what you want...

  3. Hi Jeana: I can't recall in your model if your sofa still has a relatively flat surface if you don't inflate the air mattress? If so, then I bet you could look for some alternative mattresses to put on top of it in the short term if you don't like the wobbly feel of a thick air mattress (I personally don't). If your air mattress is too firm, see if inflating it a bit less and/or putting a 2" memory foam topper on it helps. I finally arrived at the Thermarest-style mattresses as they provided the nice "give" of air without being wobbly like the thicker air mattresses (look at my April 2011 blog post for pics). Hopefully, you can find a good solution that will work for the short term.

    I think you're absolutely right to figure out what kind of camping you want to do before settling on your long-term rig. Right now, I enjoy very natural settings of state/national parks and don't want to be limited to a commercial RV park due to a big rig size, but I'm sure that will change as I get closer to retirement and want to stay parked for weeks at a time and stay inside the rig more.

    I can tell you I've REALLY liked having a toad. Much more than I thought I would. For a solo RVer, I thought it would be a tremendous pain in the butt, but just the opposite. For instance, today, I had to take my View to the dealer 45 miles away to get some service done. Previously, I would have had to phone someone and coordinate times to drive me back home/go to pick it up when it's done, etc. But all I had to do was bring my toad with me and I instantly had my own ride home! Same great solution if I ever need my toad serviced.

    It was also really comforting when traveling to know I had a "2nd engine" behind me if the View ever broke down. Yes, you need to be a bit more careful when driving to not get yourself into a situation where you'd need to back up, but the View is still short enough to U-turn with a toad and get in/out of most gas stations and parking lots, so I never really felt restricted by towing one. I'm sure that will be a different story when moving to a bigger Class A with it's reduced maneuverability.

    If you'll be living in your RV in Tucson and staying in 1 place awhile, you might really like having a toad if your finances will allow it. With most towbar setups, you'll be able to transfer it to another rig with minimal cost, so it won't be money down the drain if you do change rigs in the future.

    Harvest Hosts sounds pretty neat-- I'll be interested to see pics of some of the wineries you visit!

  4. good for you for doing the test drive!!..and good luck with whatever you decide to do!!

  5. Lets start with the jerk salesman. In The past month I have really had it with these types. I have very little reserve left to put up with them. And when they start acting like there my daddy then look out. I had a daddy and he was the best and treated me with respect and taught me not to take crap from any man. I better quit now I can start a new blog about this subject.
    It is great that you took that test drive it shows you have what it takes to make it in this world to. Best wishes got to what ever you deside to do.

  6. We've had our diesel pusher for nearly two years. For fulltiming, we can't beat it. But, would we go back to gas? Sure! When the day comes that we find our home base and are ready for something smaller for weekends and vacations, we'd happily get a small Class A gasser....or maybe a View!

    Happy shopping!

  7. I know this will date me but.........
    As to what a girl can do... Tell the salesman about Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. Great dance team.
    She could do everything he could do, backwards, wearing a skirt and in heels.
    Do you think the salesman could? I doubt it.
    Good luck with your search.

  8. Go back to gas? Not likely. After years in a semi I simply feel more at ease with the longevity and design of diesels. But that's a very subjective answer.

    Don't know the exact size of that Monaco but I do suggest you look at the issue of Wheelbase / Overall Length. We have a very short Class A (2002 Winne Journey DL 32TD) and we knew that RV's with a WB/length ratio down around 50% results in a more maneurverable vehicle that tends to have stability issues at high speed. It's a function of a lot of wind surface and a short base. We love the RV but others we know who have their own wish they had something with less susceptibility to gusting.
    Dont want to dissuade you, but don't want you to be unhappy after the fact.

    Funny about the "girl" comment. I know a lot of women like you, but as a photographer who has a lot of women in my studio I'm surprized at how many women actually LIKE being called girl. And most of my models have been 40-60. There must be some degree of sensitization involved. Personally, I avoid it by calling people by name, but it's always interesting the way people can be equally offended by exactly opposite behaviors.

    Good luck on the search.