Over the past few years, we’ve fantasized about the possibility of traveling full-time. A couple of months ago, the stars aligned and we essentially got a big shove out of the nest. Suddenly it seemed as though life was saying, “Stop talking about it and just DO it!!”
Setting The Wheels In Motion
The perfect couple appeared on our doorstep to rent our home. (They wanted it furnished! They love to garden! They’re meticulous, kind, and already feel like friends.) Eric was ready to retire from his work as an irrigation contractor, and I have a part-time writing job that I can do anywhere. All of these were big pieces of the puzzle that had fallen into place.
What we didn’t expect: The torture of sorting through and deciding the fate of all of our belongings, figuring out insurance (did you know that if you rent your home, your belongings in your storage unit and vehicles are no longer covered?), and a staggering array of other details that needed to be settled for life on the road.
So Much More Work Than We Imagined
Over the past two months, we completely emptied our home and basement of all personal belongings (including all of our artwork and decorative treasures and five file cabinets of assorted and mostly useless paperwork). I am not a packrat. Eric kind of is. Packrat or not, the amount of stuff we had to wade through was nothing short of overwhelming. For a solid two months, we sorted, donated, shredded, pitched, and sold stuff. This was in addition to selling two vehicles, buying a new truck, taking care of maintenance on our home and gardens, and wrapping up work obligations.
We thought we were organized. Ha. On the last day we were packing, I realized that the box I was throwing stuff into contained a stray Christmas stocking, a kitchen spatula, and a pair of underwear.
It took the heroic efforts of our friends Leslie and Steve to help us finish packing and cleaning on the last day. We couldn’t have done it without them. And the generosity of our friends Ted and Kath who offered us refuge on their beautiful land, where we spent ten days in our trailer before leaving town. We needed every minute of that time to finish organizing our storage unit (including repacking the mongrel Christmas stocking box) and to handle the remaining details of leaving the safety of our nest.
And Finally, On The Road
We’ve spent this past week traveling slowly through eastern Oregon, recovering from turning our lives upside down and inside out. The truth is that we love our hometown. We aren’t leaving because we think we’re going to find a better place. Our lives are rich with close friends, weekly music jams, beautiful hikes right out our front door, frequent and fun social gatherings, and all that we need to sustain us comfortably in a beautiful small town.
But we’ve wanted to travel more extensively for many years, and the time is now. We’re grateful that we have a place to call home that we love so much. And we’re thrilled that we have the opportunity to embark on this epic journey. We hope you’ll come along with us.
You may have flown the coop, but you know your friends and family will still be here when you one day wander back into town. I hope the stress of packing and organizing gently falls off you as you begin to gather dust on the trail. Have fun and don’t come back until you’re completely exhausted!! Can’t wait to hear your stories as you go.
Thanks for the wonderful wishes, Janet. And thank you for all of your encouragement for our travels over these past few years!
Happy travels and adventures, planned and serendipitous. I look forward to your photos (how about one of you by your rig?) as well as the wonderfully written updates.
Thanks, Joanne. We’ll take a pic of us by our rig, and then everyone will know for sure that we’re crazy. We’ve already had a few people say, “You’re going full time in THAT??”
Cheers to your next great road adventure! Can’t wait to see you at the Columbia River gorge next week ~ Dia
We’re looking forward to seeing you, Dia, and hiking with you!
Glad you are finally finished with all of the packing and sorting and on the road. Spottie looked like what the heck? in the pic you sent me! Happy trails, be safe and have fun!
xxoo, your sister
The cat. Can’t believe we’re traveling with the cat. xo
Can’t wait to see pictures and hear about your new adventures.
We’re happy to have you two along for the journey — and we hope to finally meet up with you again on the road!
ohhhhhhmyyyyyygooooodness. the cat. that is hysterical. and i laughed hard at that kitchen spatula christmas stocking and underwear phenom. i know all about the last few boxes random compilation thing well. mine is usually a toothbrush screw driver sponge and box of macaroni and cheese…or something like that. and wonder every time how it is even possible! have a blast!!! so darned cool you guys.
I just love it that I can always count on you to appreciate my bizarre sense of humor! The scary thing is, the stories are true. Haha I think your box of random stuff is even stranger than ours. ;-)
You MADE it! And I guess you still be talking to each other….. was fun running into you on the plaza. What an enormous exhale. …… almost ran out of breath methinks. I’m looking forward to Spotty’s posts – we need to hear that point of mew.
It’s amazing that all three of us actually left town together. We figure if we survived sorting stuff in a 90-degree heat wave in our storage unit we should be able to endure anything that arises on this journey. (Spotty is busily writing — her point of mew (haha) is soon to come.)
Ohh Laurel. Yes we do feel like old friends. Being half of the neatsy-cleansy couple you lovingly referred to. Chris and I feel the same way. We Love, Love, Love your house and every inch surrounding it. Your presence in our lives was a real blessing and answer to prayers. We moved here so that I could find a new home for my Horse Learning Adventure business. We are grateful, and do please give us updates about Kitty. Can’t wait to hear about her travelogue from her point of view So happy for you two. Can’t wait to see more. Lila, Holly Street guardian, Ashland
How lucky we are. ;-)
Oh boy! Looking forward to my vicarious adventure with you guys.
Oh yay!! So happy to have you travel along with us. ;-)
Grand adventure indeed! We wish you good fortune in pursuing your wanderlust! (Unfortunately your 21′ Bigfoot trailer will not bring you in our direction. But you might abandon it for a time…)
We would LOVE to visit you in India! You’re right, we probably can’t bring the Bigfoot.
Both Morey & I are so looking forward to your grand adventure. Have fun and stay safe.
Thanks, Brenda. We’re looking forward to hearing about your travels, too, now that you’re free!
Oops, guess we waited to long to visit you, eh? :) Odel and I were so surprised to read that you made it into the fulltiming life. Good for you! Now it is our turn to live the traveling life vicariously through YOU. Can’t wait.
Laurie & Odel, so happy to hear from you! You’ve inspired us throughout the years. I think Eric and I are pretty surprised, too, that we’ve actually graduated to fulltiming. Actually, stunned might be the word.
So glad you are on your way to new and exciting adventures. You now get to experience this beautiful world with home and material possessions safely behind you. Now it is time for living in the present, enjoying the moment, seeing the beauty in front of you and having time to rest, renew, open yourselves to all that may unfold for you both. Send me a photo of Spot in her new digs. The pictures you’ve sent are glorious, Oregon is truly a diverse and amazing state.
HAVE FUN AND BE HAPPY – LOVE, PEGGY
Thank you so much, Peggy. It does feel like we’re FINALLY into our adventure. We’ll post photos of Spotty soon! She’s a happy little camper. Sort of. xo