Words of wisdom

Words of wisdom

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Last week I was looking forward to leaving on Tuesday to attend the Tampa RV show and reporting back to you about all the wonderful new RV's I'd seen, the people I'd met and the fun I had taking a few days vacationing with friends in Ft. Myers and Venice.

Instead, I was called into the office on Monday afternoon and told that I and at least 8-10 other workcampers were being let go. To say that I was totally shocked would be a total understatement. I was told by the very wonderful GM that I had done a fantastic job, I had handled every job assigned to me with expediency and complete competence, etc. etc. etc., but.....the owner had just over-hired. (25 workcampers - that's 25 RV sites given over to workcampers who only worked hours-for-their-site and didn't have to pay the very high-season rates the guests pay.) So the poor GM was given the job of letting us go. I was mad, but I felt so sorry that Jerry was put in this position by the owner who lives in California and considers owning this beautiful resort 'his little hobby.'

The majority of workcampers are retired folks who, like me, love the idea of traveling, seeing the country and stopping to work a set amount of hours a week (normally 15-24) for the opportunity to spend 3,4 or 6 months in an area they want to explore during their time off. The majority of workcampers call their RV home and budget their expenses based on not having to pay for a site for the time they agree to work. The majority no longer have a 'stix & brix' home and unless they are willing to start paying for a site, have no place to go.

This is high-season in Florida. The prices are at their highest and sunbirds have filled the RV parks to capacity. And all workcamping positions have been filled for months. And did I mention, we were given just 2 days to pack up and move out?

What to do? Well, I decided to visit my son in Raleigh and let him repay me for all the times he moved back home:) I thought, I'll just wander back up and drive him crazy for 2 months before I head out to Oregon for my summer job.

Then yesterday I got a call from my property manager saying she had once again been notified that my renters (who had refused to resign another long-term lease, and since October have been on a month-to-month) had broken all the HOA rules that apply to parking boats and commercial vehicles on property - for the 3rd time. I realized that maybe this was a great time to go back home and regroup. So yesterday, with my blessing, she gave them a 30-day notice to vacate.

Instead of going to Tampa on Tuesday, on Wednesday afternoon I headed north. Spent the first night in Dothan, AL, the next night in Anderson, SC (after having the not-so-pleasant experience of having one of the month-old tires on the Jeep literally explode while in a construction zone on the extremely busy I-85 just south of Atlanta). In Anderson I reconfirmed my opinion of KOA's - yuck. Overpriced and not well kept. Yesterday morning I drove the short distance to Charlotte where parked and locked up Winnie and spent the day and evening with my oldest and dearest friends, the Hoard's, enjoying their always wonderful hospitality and guest bed. This morning I drove to Raleigh and into #2's driveway at his brand new house.

I have since unloaded Winnie and moved into his lovely guest bedroom. I've cooked dinner, snuggled with Princess (who used to be my cat and is now Sean's baby) and watched lots of football.

Monday I'll drive to Wilmington to put Winnie in storage, get a haircut and visit with some of my girlfriends before returning to Raleigh on Tuesday. I'm here until February 16th - then back to Wilmington, get my furniture out of storage and moved back in my house and then decide what I want to do.

Options abound. I can get used to living in my lovely house again (pic above), try to rent it, try to sell it (probably not), or maybe put in a good security system, lock it up, get Winnie out of storage and head to Oregon as planned. I haven't a clue at this point which of those I will choose. Any and all ideas or suggestions will certainly be appreciated!

I'm also trying to decide what to do about this blog. My Home on the Roam will be at the Monkey Junction Boat & RV Storage facility and life in Wilmington is really rather boring. This I say from experience, it's why I hit the road in the first place. But I promise that you will be first to know what decision I make and I'll be sure to invite you to come along on my next adventure - whatever or wherever that may take us!

Until next time, which probably won't be for a few months...take care of each other.



  1. Re, life is short, eat desert first, figure out how you can stay on the roam a little longer. As you have found out meeting new people and new places really spices up ones life. You also find out that people and not things are the most important treasures in life. When the time comes for a change you will not have to question the decision. Have a problem like Rick and Nina which is figuring out were their next vacation will be,...... or where will I get my next work camper job?

  2. Love the comment above. I will be very sad if you give up the Home on the Roam but I can't imagine you sitting still for very long..with or without Winnie. Whatever your decision..take us along:) Can't imagine life ever being boring when you are there in the midst of it :) Beautiful house there...hope all is intact when you see it again.

  3. I've enjoyed reading your blog and was so surprised to read that you were jobless. Very uncaring owner. But, as always, you were quick on your feet (i.e. tires) and off you went. Glad you have good friends, a son, and a home if you need it. You've got a good attitude. I'm sure you will figure everything out in time.

  4. I will miss home on the roam and will miss your thoughtful reflections of life on the road. I will miss the strength I've gleened about renewing my own dream to get on the road and follow in your footsteps. I will wait and hope to again see your posts on your life on the roam. Do what fills your heart Re. Not much time to waste. Later....

  5. Come on ReAnn there is no way you are going back to the stix&brix. We are just starting our adventures on the workamping trail and were looking forward to meeting you. One bad owner should not make you doubt yourself about this life style. Fix up the house rent it or lock it up and head for Oregon.