Mona Liza and I started seriously considering full-timing in an RV in 2006. My parents lived in a Class-A motorhome for several years, and I was their “lead mechanic”. So I was somewhat familiar with the lifestyle. Being the adventurous person she is, Mona Liza was perfectly willing to start looking at RV’s and consider this huge change for us. She is a brave soul; much more so than I.
The first salesman we talked with at the very first RV show we attended gave us some excellent advice. “Floor plan, floor plan, floor plan”, he said. He also helped us to narrow our search to a Class-A motorhome (rather than a 5th wheel trailer), based on the fact that we would be full-timing. Since that day, we have walked through well over 100 motorhomes. Even after we narrowed our search to a couple of models, we continued to check out others for ideas. We finally purchased our 2008 Winnebago Tour on August 1st, 2009. We had already purchased a 2008 Honda CR-V to be our “Toad” to pull behind the RV, after substantial research about which cars can be towed and matching it to our needs.
Even if you have substantial experience with plumbing and AC and DC wiring as I do, there is a steep learning curve when you get into a modern motorhome. We have added several after-market products during the past couple of years to make ours safer and more enjoyable. The challenge for me was learning diesel engines, hydraulics and current electronics. I cannot stress enough how important it is to own your RV for a while to really learn its systems before heading off into the sunset, if you plan to live in it full-time.
So, that’s where we are as of February, 2012. We’ll be moving into “Betsy” within a couple of weeks, and our great adventure will begin!
Mona Liza’s thoughts:
Fulltiming was a foreign word to me when Steve broached the idea of living in a motorhome and traveling around the country. The thought of retiring early to travel and see the beautiful country was very enticing. As we explored, researched and thought about it the more interested I became. To test if we really like this kind of lifestyle we rented a 35 ft motorhome and drove to southern California with family for Christmas. We stayed at MotorCoach Country Club RV resort in Indio to taste resort living. Indeed it turned out to be a fancy place to stay in. Our rented RV was nestled in between the big boys.
After a few days of resort living we then went to the extreme of boondocking at Anza Borrego Desert park where there are no hookups, meaning no water or electricity to connect to nor a sewage dump. Being in the desert was quite an experience, especially since we were with some of my family!
We really enjoyed the experience, and the hunt for a motorhome was on. During the next two years we went to many RV shows, checking out Class A motorhomes to find “the one” that would become our home on wheels.
Our countdown to our retirement began a year ago. This has been a busy year for us preparing and planning financially, mentally and emotionally. The thought of selling the house, selling all our belongings and moving from a two story house to a very small motorhome was very daunting. It all came down to purging ourselves of stuff and letting go of any attachments to things.
Living in a motorhome and being mobile anytime is a whole new lifestyle and new experience for both of us. I may miss my yard, my flowers and the chirping birds, but i get to wake up everyday to a different beautiful landscape.
So this is the beginning of a new chapter in our life, a complete turn around of what we are used to and normally do. We are now both retired and ready to see and explore the world.
Come and tag along in our journey and see how we fare in our crazy lifestyle.