Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Ready for rain

I'm in northern California and we're finally going to have several days of rain beginning Saturday. We're having a drought year and really need the showers. Since I'm working in a state park campground, there are several potential problems that need to be solved before the weekend.

It's been cold and foggy here (highs in the upper 40s and lows in the low 30s). The fog has been thick enough to warrant a northern state warning until 11 am most days. Rather than use the furnace that sucks up propane rather quickly and only has vents from the kitchen back to the bedroom, I use a small electric heater in the living area where I work. As much as I would like to keep all the heat in, the RV must be vented. It's not much of an issue in the living area where I keep the heater on top of a file box pointed directly at my knees (pretending it's a fireplace), but areas like the bathroom develop condensation on the ceiling and inside the medicine cabinet. The outside walls inside the cabinets in the kitchen and living area also become damp. The solution is to keep all the cabinet doors open. It looks a little strange but it's better than sponging the walls off and dealing with mildew. If anyone has any other suggestions besides the tubs of Damp-Rid, I'm all ears.

A couple of the volunteers who work here have cars and I can hitch a ride to do laundry. If I know a storm is coming, I like to have clean clothes folded and stashed indoors.

Another chore I try to handle before the rain falls is taking out the trash. The big covered can is only 25 feet away from the RV but it's under several trees and sits on dirt. When it rains, I need to be careful not to slip in the mud while lifting the heavy lid (to prevent our raccoon, fox, coyote and feathered friends from playing with the trash).

I'm a big fan of listening to the rain on the roof and have no problem hunkering down inside the RV for a few days. Rainy day activities include making soup or stew in the crockpot, alphabetizing CDs and DVDs (OK, I'm a little obsessive), tweaking the laptop and back-up drives (where the music and spoken word CDs reside), listening to all the Christmas music I've collected (minus "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" and Alvin and the Chipmunks), watching the Christmas DVDs and napping. I always sleep well when it rains. There are flannel sheets on the bed, a quilted bedspread and a sleeping bag rated to zero degrees on top. I don't use a heater at night and I'm toasty warm.

Usually, I start the day with coffee and I keep several types on hand. During the rain, however, I brew tea to have with shortbread cookies or scones. Baking the scones also warms the RV and keeps the moisture down.

What do you do during the rain?


  1. I also turn the heat off at night. I have a feather comforter. Also, I have an electric blanket under the bottom sheet which I turn on when I start thinking about going to bed and turn off when I get in. It's wonderful to get into a pre-warmed bed. When I'm not plugged into shore power, I have an electric lap robe that runs on dc (from a truck stop) that does the same chore.
    - Gypsy Jane

  2. Hi,

    Hahahaha, it is delightful to read your column.
    I am not an RVer, but would love to travel in an RV to the Midwestern states. Being an Artist there is an Artist in Zionsville, IN that has a Santuary with her beautiful Nature, Animal and Angel Paintings She is known all over the world.
    I live in the NW Oregon. It doesn't rain here as much as people say. I love it here, being born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is a wonderful, peaceful, low paced life. But when it does rain or snow, I don't mind, I can paint my awesome paintings. Oils on Canvas. My dream is to have Traveling Artists Workshops. I'm also an Art Instructor. Latest painting is a Lighthouse near Cannon Beach, OR.
    For you Artists out there, keep on painting.