We followed the same route to Texas that we took on our maiden voyage as full-timers in June of 2018. I can tell you we have had a change in perspective since we started living in our RV full-time. Here are some of what we learned since going full-time.
- Atlanta traffic still sucks. Yes, sucks. We did not like it when we left and it sure has not changed. It seemed worse to us. We will do everything in our power to never drive the RV on I-285.
- When we started, I would never drive up to a RV Park without a reservation or minimum speaking to someone at the park to confirm that they have availability. I knew I wanted to stay in Tuscaloosa, AL for the evening when we left Atlanta in 2019. I checked the football schedule to confirm that Alabama had an away game. I could not get the park where we have stayed twice before on the line. I knew the manager does not leave before 7 pm so we drove there without a reservation nor confirmation that they had availability. I figured since I checked the one thing that would fill up the park on a Thursday that I would be okay. We were. They could accommodate us for an overnight stay.
- I used to call to check on national forest sites for availability. No more. We show up around 2 pm and check to see what’s available since these are first come, first serve sites.
I have become so much more relaxed about finding a site. There is almost always another place that will be available if my first choice is full. The only time I have firm up reservations is around holidays or peak season for a prime location. Memorial, Labor and Thanksgiving are huge camping holidays.
- I used to stress over the route and driving through cities. Atlanta has had absolutely the worst traffic that we have experienced in our travels. Nothing, not even Denver at the end of rush hour was as bad. We know that we can leave between 9 am to 9:30 am to miss the worst of traffic in any city. We drove around Birmingham, AL, Jackson, MS and Houston, TX with no problems. I should say Donna drove. She still handles the big city driving. I am comfortable with smaller cities like OKC, Cheyenne, Nashville, Little Rock.
- I used to worry about low bridges. There is one low bridge crossing from Louisiana to Texas. I used to fight with Roxanne. (Our Garmin GPS. I needed to name her so that I could properly argue with her.) No more. I have chilled out and realized that the signs are actually right and we can get under or over any bridge that has more than 11 feet of clearance.
I am saying all of this to help you overcome whatever might be holding you back from your dream. You don’t have to full-time RV but there might be something you want to do. You are afraid or stressing out trying it. I can tell you that practice makes you better at it. I spend more time enjoying the sites and less time stressing over the next destination. It really is a matter of perspective.