That’s More Like It

 Posted by at 12:22 am  Nick's Blog
Jan 072012

It has started to warm back up, here in Central Florida. Yesterday the mercury in our thermometer climbed to 72 degrees, and by Monday, it’s supposed to be all the way up to 79. Now that’s more like it!

Of course, our friends who are spending the winter in snowbird hotspots like the Rio Grande Valley in Texas or southern Arizona are not all that thrilled that we’ll be on the road heading in their direction in the next week or two. I won’t mention any names, but there have been threats of violence if I bring any cold weather with me! 🙂

Yesterday I printed out a copy of my new book, and Miss Terry spent the day proofreading. She didn’t throw it in the trash, so I guess that’s a good sign. 🙂

While she was doing that, I was formatting Big Lake, my first mystery, for a printed edition. A lot of people have told me that they don’t have e-book readers, and want a traditional printed copy, so I hope to have that ready to go pretty soon.

By the way, if you want a tip on another good Kindle book I just finished reading, check out The Survival of Marvin Baines, by my friend Michael Meyer. It’s the story of a man facing his mid-life crisis, and wondering what he missed due to the choices he made over the years. I think a lot of guys will see a bit of themselves in Marvin.

I spent some time exchanging e-mails with a couple yesterday, who are new fulltimers, enjoying their first winter on the road. The husband said that he had strong misgivings about the fulltime RV lifestyle, because he had a workshop full of tools back home that he was reluctant to part with. But he said that after watching coverage of people shoveling snow, cars sliding off the road, and other winter storm news over the last few days, he knows that they made the right decision. He said he still misses his tools, but he sure doesn’t miss the snow and cold of the Chicago area. Now his big regret is that they waited so long to become RV gypsies.

It’s been my experience that, more often than not, the wives are the ones most reluctant to give up their homes and hit the road. Usually their biggest obstacle is leaving the kids and grandkids behind. But I’ve also heard from people who miss having their antique collections, fully equipped kitchens, giant screen TVs, and even a riding lawnmower. (One reason many people go on the road is to not have to mow grass ever again.) 

We’ve talked about missing the grandkids before, but I’m just curious, what physical things do you miss from your old life in a sticks and bricks house? There was a time when I missed my classic Corvette, but that didn’t last all that long. I guess for me, if I had to name one thing I still long for, it would be my hot tub. I have a really bad back, and we installed our hot tub on the deck of our home in northern Arizona, just steps from the door. I soaked for an hour or so almost every night, winter or summer. If you have never soaked in a hot tub on a clear winter night, when the snow is falling around you, let me tell you, it’s an experience you won’t soon forget. We’ve soaked in RV park hot tubs from time to time, but it’s just not the same. Miss Terry said for her, it would be a close choice between the hot tub, or the glass fronted wood stove we’d run inside to warm up next to.

So what about you? What thing or things do you miss the most from your old life?

Thought For The Day – Life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.

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Nick Russell

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  34 Responses to “That’s More Like It”

  1. It’s probably not the same in the RV park hot tub because they make you wear clothes.

  2. They do??? Oops!

  3. I guess I have to say that I miss my large Craft room and craft supplies. I had to cut back so much and only was able to bring a few things with me in the RV.

  4. At the beach house where Lydia and I lived we had an 8 person spa in our back yard. New Years Eve with snow falling on us doesn’t even come close to the things that we have seen while on the road…
    Hollidays beside the fire.I have to admit I do miss.
    Mostly,I miss our freinds back home. CT
    I called the American Legion Post lounge just tonight to check in…..
    Have to admit I had to leave that lounge enviremont for my own self preservation.
    Your question begs us to look back.
    My option is to look at today
    Most importantily,I look to tomorrow….
    Thanks for the venue Nick

  5. Our screened room on the deck that overlooked the woods in the backyard. We
    entertained a lot on the deck, great memories.

  6. I miss my Hammond organ, but I have a portable keyboard. Will probably eventually give it to my son-in-law who plays.

    A colleague of mine, upon hearing about the full time RV lifestyle we were planning, said she could NEVER do that. She said, “I like my furniture too much.” I have to say. . . my life is not ruled by furniture and I am glad for that.


  7. Joyce: a bathtub. Me: nothing.
    Barry & Joyce

  8. While we are not out there amongst you fulltimers YET, but when the time comes, I’m really going to miss my very well equipped machine, fabrication, welding and engine building shop along with the garage and hoist.

    Currently, if we need something, we build it (very handy while building our bus conversion). It pains me very much to pay someone else to do or make something that I could do or make myself. (Sometimes better and correctly!)

    But, all of life is a compromise.


  9. Things we miss:
    How about Real estate Taxes, Garbage bill, Dealing with snow, water bill, trimming shrubs and trees, mowing grass, neighbors constantly hollering, painting around the house.
    Wow, do we love missing these things.

  10. Randy doesn’t miss anything! Terry misses 2 ply toilet paper and hard pulsing water pressure. 🙂

  11. The only thing I miss is the backyard birds we had and always enjoyed so much.

  12. I miss the large yard that my dog ran on.

  13. Home-grown tomatoes! And a second bathroom. And a bathtub to soak in with bubblebath. I can buy the last two if I want to pay $$ for a motel/hotel, but I have a hard time finding good-tasting tomatoes at any price.

  14. We are on the road 6 – 8 months a year. While not technically full timers, when we get home I appreciate:

    • my large well equipped kitchen with all the tools I need to prepare a meal from scratch, sufficient counter space, a well stocked freezer and dishwasher to clean up the mess at the end.

    • the washer/dryer so that I don’t have to waste time at a laundromat and can do the wash as needed while doing other things.

    • decent internet service so I can watch videos online and download podcasts without keeping an eye on data usage and worrying about getting FAP’ed

    • getting the mail every day and UPS/FedEx deliveries to my porch without worrying about where we will be when the item actually gets delivered

    • taking a shower with decent water pressure

    • taking care of medical issues in the brief time we are near our doctor is a hassle and could become more or a problem as we age and have more of those issues

    • planning where we are going to go and finding a place to stay can be fun, but is also time consuming. Sometimes I would rather be thinking about other things.

    • knowing where in our community to go for whatever I want to accomplish without having to do a lot of research or asking around.

    • having more space to simply be. We have a 40 foot motor home, which many use for full timing, but when we get home, our moderate house feels so lavish. And I can sit on a lawn chair on our tiny deck and not be right on top of my neighbor.

    Obviously these issues have not stopped us from being on the road much of the year, but you asked!

  15. I don’t dwell on persons/places/or things that I miss. I certainly have fond memories of my past and what I’d had. Instead I think about things that I don’t miss. I don’t miss snow shovels, lawn mowers, painting the house, paying enormous fuel and electric bills, etc. I enjoy the “turn key” life I now have. If I had a nasty neighbor move in next door to me, I was stuck for lets say……. life. Now if I have a less than nice neighbor then I have the option to just “turn the key.” Plus if you keep moving you can keep ahead of the bill collectors and find new cosigners.

  16. I do not full time but have often thought about your questions as I do travel. Life certainly is about choices. What I miss most while traveling…..a large shower, a fenced yard for the dogs that only require me to open a door for them…the art work and photos that are on my walls.

    Maybe some day when I have traveled around enough to know where….I would like to find that stick cabin with the inviting deck over looking pensive beauty…with a hot tub tucked in on the side. Can you miss things that you haven’t found yet?

  17. We are almost “launched” for full time, and currently decluttering and removing items that we don’t need. It feels so “FREEING” to un-encumber ourselves from a lot of this stuff. The motorhome is pretty much set as to what we will be using full time.

    Hubby built a major toolbox in one compartment on our motorhome so almost all his tools are going along.

    I made sure I have reserved spaces for my table loom, spinning wheel and sockknitting machine and plenty of yarn!

    The only thing I might regret is the multiple looms I have in my studio. I may take along one floor loom, disassembled in the basement compartments (we have plenty of CCC weight allowable) and then perhaps reassemble out under our awning from time to time when setting in a park for a while. Or perhaps even talk an RV park into letting me set it up in a clubhouse for a day or two and let people see how I weave rugs. Could be a fun adventure.

    All in all, we will come back to Wisconsin in the summers to visit with the grandkids, and fly home for a week or two at Christmas for visits too. But the rest of the time they will be in school or busy with their daily lives while we are enjoying the sun and warmth of the desert!

  18. Hawaii

  19. NADA.

  20. I miss my workshop. I don’t miss all the work on the farm and the snow. I do miss the ease of handling medical issues when always in the same place. Louise misses her books. She says her kindle is just not the same.

  21. Well, we’ve been full time now for about 3 years – and David misses his ‘own’ TV and mancave – I do occasionally miss my big kitchen (cookie baking time) but really don’t miss much at all!

  22. We are a ways away from full-timing, but as a musician (bass player and drummer) I would have a hard time leaving my well appointed studio where I can go out any time I want and play as long and as loud as I want! I am gearing up with smaller equipment I can fit in the bays for when we do hit the road in hopes of finding other RV musicians to jam with.

  23. We’ve been full-time 3½ years now and still think it’s the best “gig” ever.

    What do we miss? Our ocean view lanai on Maui and a large shower with oodles of hot water.

    What do we love about full-timing? You don’t have enough disk space for a full list…

  24. Knowing the alternate routes to destinations when traffic backs up. Heck, even knowing the main routes. 🙂

  25. I miss being able to soak in a tub whenever I want…but not enough to give up fulltiming. The other thing I miss is wall space even though I understand the reason there is none. I’m used to being surrounded by ever changing photos and items that caught my eye for future projects. In the interim…we’ll continue using our digital frame for an even more expanded ever changing photos. My husband hasn’t talked about missing anything. He just keeps reveling in the things that he no longer has to do…cleaning the pool, yard work, property taxes, etc. This lifestyle is too good to go back to sticks and bricks.

  26. After being on the road full time just under 8 years and have read all the comments I can not think of one thing I miss. However Elaine missis her bathtub.

  27. Sometimes I miss my big sewing room, but I don’t miss cleaning it up or the big house that went along with it. And I have more time to sew and craft because we don’t have to keep up that stick and brick ball and chain. Not to mention all the new friends I have made and new skills I have learned as a result of being on the road.

  28. We are only “wintertimers” but I miss a long hot shower and my kids. I have to agree with Ed.. Hawaii. I was there on a “girlfriend get away” and would love to go with my husband. Haven’t figured out how to get the RV over yet! Yet alone island hop with it.

  29. Since we winter in Breckenridge CO, I miss my garage. The only thing I hate about wintering at a ski resort is having to scrape the frost off the windshield.

  30. Sometimes I miss my whirlpool tub. . .but that’s about it! It’s a great life. . .


  31. Ohhhhhhh the hot tub on a snowy MN winter night and a sore back I can relate. We are somewhat fulltimes – in the summer! In the winter our home in in the RGV community has a hot tub but sitting in 103 degrees and 70 degree weather just isn’t quite the same as 10 degrees!

  32. I miss my yard and garden most. But I still travel with my plants. When my plants get too big and have to go in the ground, wherever I am, I find a new friend that will allow me to plant it in their yard. Just my way of passing it on…..
    Hubby misses some of his power tools, but we both agreed, we wouldn’t change our lifestyle for anything……

  33. I miss having a few woodworking tools so repairs and/or modifications can be made easily rather than when we happen to be near a table saw and router. Katie misses one or two kitchen appliances that we don’t have room for, even though we’ve made room for a bunch already. Other than that, we’re pretty well set and enjoy the RV lifestyle more than living in one place in a house that doesn’t travel well.

  34. I miss my garbage disposal, the conventional plumbing and my washer/dryer! But I wouldn’t give this up for the world!

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