I am sitting here in a RV resort in Casper, WY hunkering down as the winds are battering us like crazy. Ophelia (our rv) is taking quite the beating today. I am honestly not sure if this is a common thing in the area or just something that occurs certain times of the year. I have heard of the prairie winds before, but these are some serious wind gusts! We decided to take a stop over here to get the oil change done on the rv. A trip to Wal-Mart to shop (by myself 😊) was a big treat as well. Gannon is in the living area watching old western TV shows. Since being on the road, we have enjoyed using our antenna. We actually get several channels in most places that we have stayed. We have become very fond of MeTV and H&I. Old westerns such as Gunsmoke, Rawhide, Bonanza, The Rifleman, and my personal favorite, Wagon Train are refreshing to watch. We are also re-watching Adam 12 and all the Star Treks (original, TNG, & DS9).
We are still in the figuring out stage of what works best for us. We love to boondock, but also utilize campgrounds and resorts as needed. And frankly, we had no idea that when we sold our house (before Covid-19) and decided to finally live out our dream that Covid would have everyone else rving as well. It is the end of September and it is still very crowded out here. If you want to start a new business, it should be to open a campground/rv resort. No Joke! My new full-time job is figuring out what area we are going to and where we are going to stay. I have gotten proficient in using many different apps, websites, and maps. We truly love our rv and it feels like home to us now. We call her “home” when we are talking to each other now.
My lifestyle has completely changed. I rarely ever where make-up or fix my hair. I usually get 1 shower a week and take sponge baths or baby wipe baths in-between. Clothes are worn multiple times (except underwear) and we wash in laundry mats every week or so. I never seem to know what day of the week it is and have to get used to being in different time zones. Gannon and I are together 24/7 and have to work together as a team to accomplish all that needs to get done. Obviously, you need to work out disagreements immediately, because there is no other room to stomp off to and slam the door. Ha-ha! I think that social media has made this out to be such a fun and fancy-free way to live. I have contributed to that by posting happy, beautiful, amazing places that we have visited or camped at. But the reality, although it is those things, it is also a lot of hard work. New things break each day, different weather to deal with, not sure where you are going to sleep that night, finding gas stations that you can fit into, finding propane when you need it, and where are you going to dump; which leads to a big one….you literally have to deal with your own crap! And even sometimes, other people’s crap. Gannon has helped many a person at a dump station try and figure out how to dump for the first time. We laugh at the fact that he no longer has to solve or deal with others people’s figurative crap for a living. Now he just helps them with their literal crap for free!
Having a dog, let alone an elderly dog on the road has been a challenge. Jack is almost 13 now. He has always been a nervous wreck, but now, especially on travel days, he is a mess. I have given him dog stress stuff (including CBD) and nothing seems to work. He loves getting out and smelling all the new places we go, but getting there is challenging for him. We put a gate up so he cannot get in the cab area with us while driving. He was getting under our feet and causing all kinds of havoc. National Parks allow dogs, but it’s very minimal where he can go in them. Leaving him in the back of the Jeep at some is also not allowed as grizzly bears can come eat him! Leaving him for several hours in the rv has been challenging as well. Most places do not want you leaving your animal unattended. He has started to howl, which he has never done in the past. We have to leave the fan and tv on, give him ¼ a Benadryl, and rush as fast as we can to do stuff we want to do. Gannon made him a ramp that helps him get up and down the stairs as he has arthritis in his little legs. We are doing the best we can for as long as we can for him. The funny thing (and embarrassing thing) about him is where he decides to poop. I think I might need to make him his own Instagram account for it. If it is in front of large groups of people, in the middle of the street, on a hill, in front of a geyser, where lots of people are walking or watching…. that is where he is going to go. He does this 100% of the time. Like I said, funny, but also very embarrassing.
As fall approaches, we plan on finishing up being in Wyoming and start heading south. We need to do a stop over in Nevada, then onto Utah and Arizona. Family and friends are missed terribly, but the thought of not doing this anymore makes us even more sad. Thank goodness for FaceTime, Marco Polo, and texting. Technology has been great for keeping in touch. And even on our hardest days out here, we still love the freedom and flexibility that we have in doing this lifestyle. We are looking forward to fall/winter, getting more into our own groove, experiencing more of this amazing country, and of course adding more stickers to our US map.