For some of you, it is travel season! For the rest of you, it’s just Tuesday. Either way, spring is in the air, and it is time to prepare to hit the road. When and where are we next traveling? Hell if I know, but as soon as my wife tells me I will be overloading the trailer with food and clothes. Meanwhile, it is fun just to think and prepare for traveling!
If you are like us, you have a brick-and-mortar home that must be prepared before hitting the road for any consequential time. We all need to prepare for lawn care, mail, parole requirements, outstanding warrants, and court appearances.
The good news for us is we have a lawn guy – Carl Spackler, who takes fabulous care of our grounds. While we are here at home, of course, we take meticulous care of our lawn, so we cannot afford to leave our yard to chance. We tell Carl to keep all the weeds, moss and mushrooms mowed to the same height. As I have mentioned many times before, we have ¼ mile grass: from a ¼ mile away it looks OK.
Mail can be a devious thing. While most of our mail is now delivered electronically, there are still some pieces of mail, particularly around tax season, that are important to keep track of. We hire a neighborhood teen to collect our mail in our absence. You know what that means: his mother does all the work, and he gets paid.
The post office will hold your mail for 30 days, but if you are hitting the road longer than that, then you must have a plan. There are important catalogs, offers to buy our property, extended car warranties and other time-sensitive and critical information that we are reluctant to miss. As a result, we pay to have these pieces saved, so upon our return we can dump the entire pile into the recycling bin.
How do you provide security for your home while away? Fortunately for us, that is not a concern as we have a crack neighborhood security team that watches our home. Fear not.
Loading the truck and trailer in preparation for traveling is an absolute science. Even though we may be leaving for a long weekend to a nearby campground, it does not matter. We are going to pack enough clothes and food to last a family of eight for a year. Every time we get back from a trip, we say to ourselves how come we brought so much crap? And then on the next trip, we load the same amount. There is no learning going on in our world.
With the number of RV’s that are on the road today, particularly since Covid has caused everyone to reassess how and where they live, there is now, more than ever, a need to do extensive planning before hitting the road. Wisely, my wife won’t let me know our travel plans until they are locked and loaded. She does a meticulous job of creating fabulous and interesting trips. I am the driver, and I am comfortable in my own skin.
When was the last campground you saw being built? Never? That’s the answer I would give! The demand for RV’s is perhaps greater than ever, yet there is virtually no increase in the number of campgrounds. The laws of supply and demand tell us that prices will go up, availability will go down, and strategies (and lead times) to find campsites will (and are) changing.
We no longer travel during the summer months, in part due to the heat (we are more and more heat-averse), and partly there is even more intense competition for limited campsites. In the summer, we leave camping to the young families who have limited time (vacation, school, and sporting event limitations) to go camping.
Later this year we have some eclectic plans, and will report more on that as plans and experiences unfold. But for now, keep your rigs upright and between the lines.
And for the love of all things holy, stop making reservations at places we want to stay!