Friday, May 11, 2007

Out of the comfort zone...

...and into the fire.

I was given an ultimatum this week: stay where I am doing what I'm doing (both of which I enjoy), or go on the road in my RV to teach, learn and experience new adventures. It was not a simple decision. If I choose to go, when I return from my trip, I will not have a job with the RV site on the ocean near San Francisco.

For a fleeting moment, I thought about cancelling the trips in July, August and September, the heart of the RV travel season, and keeping the job that supports living in the Bay Area. Then I reminded myself why I became a full-time RVer: to travel when and where I want, to see new places and meet new people, to re-visit some old familiar places, friends and family, and have the freedom of the road. I'll be teaching new and aspiring RVers about saving space and weight in your RV; and basic self-protection for RVers, especially solo women. I'll be visiting RV dealers and stores and telling them about the terrific RV Bookstore that provides the newsletter, websites, blogs and an encyclopedic knowledge of the RV lifestyle in its forums.

There are some negatives: no alarm clocks, no business suits, no daily commute, no cube farm, no meetings, no corporate mindspeak and no competition with my co-workers. My home is my office (at least 17.6% of my current RV, according to the IRS) and my commute is my choice. If I like my neighbors and my neighborhood, I can hang around a little longer. If I don't, I have wheels and can change the view.

I know many of you are waiting to retire or finish obligations. I respect and admire you for your devotion. However, I want to encourage you to assess your current life plans with those you love and trust, and make some decisions about when and how you can embrace this wonderful lifestyle sooner than you may think you can.

The RV life is not for everyone. Sometimes it's scary and sometimes it's tough, especially when you travel alone as I do. I'm not going to kid you and tell you there are no roadblocks or detours. There is always risk in the adventure and there is always adventure in the risk.

If you're reading this and are seriously contemplating jumping into the water instead of dipping your toe, do it. There are no guarantees and life itself is risky: you won't get out alive. But while you're spinning around on this big, beautiful, blue planet, wouldn't you like to enjoy it as much as you can?


  1. When will you be on the road teaching? Will you still publish this blog? Will you post your schedule soon? Hope to see you in Pennsylvania. LindaD

  2. I'll be on the road in July, August and perhaps September. Here is the schedule:
    Life on Wheels, Moscow, ID: July 8-13
    RV Bookstore, Edmonds, WA: July 14-17
    Good Sam Rally, Redmond, OR: July 18-22
    Life on Wheels, Des Moines, IA: August 23-26

    I may be attending the Fall
    Escapade in Goshen, IN September 9-14. If I do, I will be visiting ND, WI, MN, MI, IL and IN between August 24 and September 8.

    I will definitely be at the RVing Women National Conference in Lodi, CA October 10-14.

    Unfortunately, the Life on Wheels in PA was cancelled this year but will be in Harrisburg next year.

  3. I recently moved to San Francisco, single woman living alone. Now I'm considering going to solo-RV-ing fulltime. If you're still in SFO, perhaps we could meet for lunch - I'd love to learn more! Thanks and have a wonderful week!

  4. Hi Kathy--
    Send me a PM, please, to

  5. I'm a single woman nearing retirement and I'd like to go RVing to see this beautiful country, but I don't want to travel alone. Are there groups of other single women who travel aroung together?

  6. Yes, there are groups of women who RV together. First, I recommend joining RVing Women at Then find the local chapter near where you're living now.

    My chapter, the FreeWheelers, is in northern California to the Oregon border, east to Nevada (Reno and surrounding area), and south almost to San Luis Obispo. We get together on the first weekend of the month somewhere within 100-150 miles of a park or campground.

    In October, as I mentioned, we will be hosting the RVing Women National Convention in Lodi, CA. I hope you and all the other women RVers can make it.

  7. I read your article with interest. My wife and I are leaving June 1st for our first long trip...16 months. We thought long and hard about taking on such a move. But you know we decided we did not want to look back someday and say "I wish we had gone on that trip because now we can't". While our schedules will not cross paths purhaps we will meet on the road sometime. Larry and Jo

  8. How do you handle the "legal" side of running your business while on the road? Do you have a permanent address that serves as a business address, somewhere?

    I'm going to be travelling this summer and am still wondering quite what to do with the business. I won't have a home for that period--the RV will be home. I'm curious how you handle this.

  9. Fortunately, my business is administering to the forums, writing and editing. The IRS allows all travel expenses and a percentage of dedicated RV space where I work. I'm based in northern California right now and have no stick house to call home. I'll be setting up an address with the Escapees (for mail forwarding)in Texas, and eventually getting my driver's license and registering my RV there. I don't have a business address because I can work anywhere.

  10. Hey Kiddo,
    I'm tickled pink that you're FINALLY gonna get on the road. Hopefully our paths will cross again at some point.
    Love & miss you,
    Judi & Shilo

  11. Thanks, Judi & Shilo. I know: it's about time. Hope our paths cross soon.

  12. Hello,

    I recently became a solo full-timer, with the death of my husband. I'm not yet ready to hit the road, but I am collecting information and making contacts with others. I have joined Loners on Wheels, and I looked for I found more information on Is there a difference?


  13. will also take you to It's the same great organization I've been a member of for over 5 years. If you're in the area, try to attend the national convention in Lodi, CA in October.