BOONDOCKING – CAMPING OFF GRID, NO HOOKUPS
We’ve been RVing for over 2 years, often boondocking, and no surprise…we’re STILL learning new things, finding more efficient ways to survive, and discovering unexpected resources. The average retiree, can’t afford to waste money or effort. Most of us don’t have that luxury. Fortunately, though, in the RV realm, just about everybody loves – no, is anxious – to share cool finds, hacks and information. There are tons of helpful “communities” out there, with more forming every day.
WHAT WOULD I EVER DO WITHOUT PINTEREST?
One of my first, best resource finds was Pinterest. Like You Tube, I have yet to NOT ferret out information for whatever we need, and lots, even, that I didn’t know I needed. (I think it was Albert Einstein who said, “Answers are easy, it’s knowing the right questions to ask that’s most important!”) I can put any subject in the search bar on Pinterest, and someone has posted something about it – trust me. Its uncanny ability to consume the most of my time is only rivaled by Facebook. I’ve created a board just for RV Full Time Living where I’ve stored directions on everything from “how to increase your WIFI power,” to “remodeling an old, school bus,” to “getting the most storage out of a small space.” Here, I found websites that list gobs of additional resources, not just for the “hook” they’ve posted. So, this link leads you to that website, which offers you 5 dozen more ways to do things that might work, and that link refers you to…you can see why I expend so much energy here.
TIME WELL SPENT
BUT I’m quick to say, my efforts were not in vain. A few days ago, I found a new post offering “5 free apps every RVer must have!” and they really were valuable. One lists and links to all the farmer’s markets in the US. “Audible” offers to read a plethora of books, short stories and articles to you. Another invites me to join a community of farmers and ranchers who offer a free place to park for the night. But I hit the jackpot with www.allstays.com. This website gave me a light bulb moment when I realized, duh! Whatever truckers need, RVers often need as well. We BOTH can only boondock for so long before we must empty the tanks and fill up on water. It never occurred to us that truck stops might offer dump stations and water hoses, too, not just campgrounds! The website also lists (probably) thousands of places where you can just pull in for the night and boondock – it’s not just Walmart anymore, folks!
And that brings me back to Las Cruces NM. We’d spent one night in a rest area along I-25, then headed to the city. My cousin, Carol, who works for the local Cracker Barrel restaurant, reminded me that “you know you can park here for free.” I hadn’t known, but, sure enough, allstays.com had it and 19 other businesses listed where we could have stayed. Unfortunately, this Cracker Barrel couldn’t accommodate our “monster” rig, but no worries, Walmart, right next door, had plenty of space. (We’ve found Walmart to be hit or miss for noise and disturbances, and have experienced it as both the quietest and the noisiest ever.) This busy, 24 hour store was pretty noisy, but had 24 hour security that patrolled regularly. Over all, it was a score!
AND THERE’S NOTHING LIKE RECONNECTING WITH FAMILY!
It’s one of life’s great joys to reconnect with people with whom you just “click.” It’s extra special, I think, when they’re cousins. Hospitable should be their middle names. For lunch, they took us to one of the oldest restaurants in Las Cruces, La Posta, just the kind of historical place we love. Food was excellent! I’d return in a heartbeat. After, we went back to their house to visit and catch up, and we barely interrupted the conversation by breathing. They may be 10 years older than we, but we have so many good stories and shared experiences, we could have gossiped on for, at least, another day. Hey, all you cousins, were your ears burning? Your name was probably mentioned a time or three along the way!
THE SUN HAS RETURNED
As we walked to Cracker Barrel for breakfast this morning, we could see both the full moon-set ahead and a gorgeous sunrise behind. But HALLEUJAH…the sun is shining, and it’s been a balmy 65-70 degrees. We drove all day with the windows open! Because we needed dumping and fill-up facilities (electricity and WIFI are nice luxuries, too!), we opted for the Fort Stockton RV Park tonight. AND, to all you still knee deep in snow drifts…ntice the wide-open door on the coach.
We even sat outside and cruised Facebook for an hour or so. Only two negatives – it’s close to I-10 and a little noisy, and boy, is southwestern Texas ever windy! Other than that, we’ve snuggled in for the night, Larry is snoring on the sofa behind me, and I’m ready to shut it down as well. So…Good Night! May you stay warm and have lovely dreams. We’ll chat later.