Alex and I are looking into "The Lifestyle."
(the RV lifestyle, not that other one)
We went to the Seattle RV show over the weekend and had a grand yet confusing time. There were hundreds if not thousands of RVs to tour as well as educational seminars and vendors showcasing products such as special poo container cleaners. Wait, what?
Some of the giant RVs were ridiculous.
Leather recliners and a fireplace.
Screw campsite fire pits, some people like their fire fake and indoors
Full ceiling height kitchen
This one had an additional mini kitchen plus TV outside
More TV. TVs everywhere. This model had four TVs scattered throughout.
I don't understand.
Al and I squinted at the RV show seminar program and wondered why half the seminars were about guns. They had titles like "Gun carry permits for RVers" and "State laws pertaining to RV gun owners" and "How to best enjoy your gun in a miniature home flying down the highway" and "Your gun and you: a lifelong friendship."
I must admit, I could get over the overwhelming number of TVs and fake cheesy fires but all the gun talk gave me pause.
Me: Umm... so... why all these guns in RVs? What are people afraid of? Are they afraid of animals or are they afraid of other people?
Alex: I think they're afraid of other people.
Me: Should we be afraid of other people when we're out there?
Alex: Definitely, they're all going to have guns.
I stepped into one RV and opened one of the cabinet doors. It was an oddly-shaped shallow closet so I shrugged and told Al, "I guess it's a coat closet." Then a man climbed aboard behind me, opened the same cabinet, and called over his shoulder, "Got a nice rifle closet in here." That's when it was confirmed -- we were perhaps going to be slightly out of our comfort zone in The Lifestyle.
I've been doing a lot of research about The Lifestyle and have learned a lot. One of the most popular topics is boondocking, which is when you park your RV overnight somewhere other than a designated campground. There are many places to boondock -- the ever popular Wal-Mart parking lot, rest stops, rural roads, farmland, etc. -- and you can find lots of advice on how to get away with it without getting towed or ticketed or beat up.
For instance, I found this helpful tip --
In the west especially, check out Federal and State "Wildlife Refuges." Some allow overnight parking. Tip: When asking the ranger if overnight parking is allowed, have binoculars and a camera, a notebook and all that other "birder" stuff on you and mention how you want to see the "flaming boobie hatch" or similar real bird's name at sunrise.
We got this.
Guns and lying to wildlife refuge rangers aside, the fact remains I'm a road warrior and am hurting to get out on the road in one of those things. We want Yosemite, Yellowstone, Glacier. And when the kids start their whiny chorus of "I have to go to the bathroom" every fifteen minutes as they have on every other road trip ever, I'll be able say, "Well, get up and go!" then honk my horn like the crazed RVing mo-fo I am.
We'll likely rent one in the upcoming months and take it out for a spin. We need to determine if this is an activity we'd truly enjoy or a giant waste of money full of TVs. We may return hardened, and owning a few guns, but if that's the price of road trip freedom, so be it.
What do you think, friends? Tiny house on wheels, yay or nay?