This past year was an accelerated learning experience for me and the learning isn’t over yet. I have enjoyed the rapid transition into my retirement very much, especially considering I was a workaholic most of my life. I think what made the difference is I tried something new, “Full Time RVing”.
I made my decision to go “Full Time” during the summer of 2013 while on a visit to my sisters guest ranch in Montana. Several of my close friends and family encouraged me to move forward. Only a few had reservations, but not me. Also Rob Wilson and his wife Jan, whom I had met from their online blog as they visited 50 National Parks in their Sprinter Van were a role model to me and also encouraged me during the process. I also followed RV Sue and Crew, The Bayfield Bunch, Life Live RV and too many more to name.
Anyone who knows me would agree I don’t usually try something new too easily, especially something that so radically changes every aspect of your life. Mine, which had been very stable for years. My most recent home of ten years was located in Costa Mesa, California.
OCTOBER 2013, I finalized my full-time plans just as I was retiring. By the end of that month I ordered my coach, to be delivered to me in Ehrenberg, Arizona in February 2014.
DECEMBER 2013, I finalized my domicile in Montana by traveling there to set up my address and secure my Montana Drivers license. During that time I visited my Sister and Brother-in-law who had just sold the ranch and moved into a beautiful home on ten acres. Soon after I left, they started plans for a remodel on the guest house on their property where I can stay when I’m in Montana. It turned out very nice.
JANUARY 2014, after returning to California I made arrangements to purchase my Workhorse in Oregon and flew there late in the month and had a leisurely drive back to Southern California.
Ever since last November I had been slowly packing items that I would eventually move into my coach, eliminating “stuff” by selling or giving away to my children.
A few items destined to be passed down on my exit to heaven were passed along a little early. I found myself stressing a little during the entire process, but I would say it was mostly the excitement of the upcoming changes. The biggest adventure of my life.
FEBRUARY 2014, the daily countdown started and I moved a few of my boxes of possessions into the storeroom.
Separately all of my packed items for the Coach were weighed and moved into my Garage for the big day.
Finally the morning of February 10th was upon me after months of preparation. I was excited beyond my dreams and ready to go to the RV Dealer to do my PDI, learning as much as I could in just a couple of hours. I loaded up the boxes from my garage and off I drove to Mike Thompson RV in Corona.
After my PDI I traveled to Ehrenberg, Arizona to receive my delivery and taking possession of my new home “The Coach” by signing the final papers at Wendy’s. There I met with the transportation company pulling my Coach and a Notary. Frank, the driver was nice and spent some extra time with me, since it was my first time to hitch not only my Coach, but any fifth wheel. Scary at first but rewarding.
It’s official, I am on the road.
MARCH 2014, I explored Arizona with my new rig and spent time with family.
APRIL 2014, I met my new companion, Jagger. This again changed my lifestyle and we are still getting to know each other. Many of my blogs talk about the challenges Jagger and I have had and we are still having, but we’ve made some progress.
MAY 2014, I left for Montana and saw many sights as I traveled North through Utah and Idaho.
JUNE – JULY – AUGUST 2014, was spent relaxing at home, taking some short trips, and preparing for the trip back South in September.
SEPTEMBER 2014, we headed back South for the Winter
The remainder of the year was full of exploring and experiencing new way of life. More details of my year is included in the individual blog here on the Retired Vagabond site.
I met many nice people along the way, including my friends and followers here at Retired Vagabond. I also was able to experience some of my adventures with my family. I must say that I am a very blessed individual.
Wishing each one of you a Happy New Year and safe travels until next time… Gary
Categories: Full Time RVing
What a great story. Congratulations on becoming part of this wonderful lifestyle. I look forward to following you and Jagger!
Great recap Gary, This adventure just keeps on getting better. Say where are these Cinnamon rolls? with a specific mention, there may be something REALLY good going on there? (Quarttzite??)
Thanks Wayne, always good to hear from you. Cinnamon rolls definitely get my attention 🙂 I think so, not sure where Sharon had in mind, I’ve never been there for any length of time. Maybe next month when I am there.
Looks like you’re having fun and adjusting well to your new life! Any chance you’re gonna be in Quartzsite for the rv show in January?
Yep, it’s been relaxing and I enjoy seeing places that I have never visited. When I go to Cali next month I may stay at the BLM just north of Quartzsite. Still planning. Are you snowbirding there?
No, I’m not, but I’ll be there for the RV show Jan. 19-27th. Camping at La Posa North with a bunch I camp with every year. Then I’m heading to Glamis for Super Bowl and some fun in the sand for a week. Let me know if you’re gonna be there, I’ll spring for a cinnamon roll and a cup of coffee! Sharon
Cinnamon Rolls always sound good! But I am with family here in Mesa, AZ and doubt I will leave for the california trip early.
Sorry I’m gonna miss you. The cinnamon rolls are at the Cinnabon vendor on Kuehn street in front of the other vendors. You need to come for the RV show one of these years, it’s really something to see!
Wow… the photos really complete the whole story! So happy you are loving it.. we sure miss you here in California and can’t wait until your visit… Keep posting the fun!
I will be taking a quick tour of Cali next month to meet up with my Son and his wife, and catch up on my Medical and Dental routines.
Very nice recap. Here’s wishing you and Jagger many more fun adventures in 2015 🙂
Thanks Ingrid. It’s amazing so far.
You’ve come a long way Gary!! May the adventure continue and the learning go on…..Safe Travels………..