From time to time, it does us well to take a moment to reflect on what our primary goals are. Plodding along on a trail, sitting on a rock enjoying the view, or relaxing in the recliner at the end of a rewarding day all offer moments of quiet that lend themselves to reflection.
We are not new to RVing. We have lived full time in a 5th wheel for three and a half years. Before that, we were blessed to have six months a year off from our jobs. We traveled during those off months first with a tent and then for two seasons in a pop-up camper. During those early years, we dreamed of the day we would be retired and could travel full time. An RV was the means by which we could do that comfortably and affordably. That dream consumed us; it was our primary interest and occupied most of our time, energy, and thoughts. We were going to live in an RV so we could travel around this great land and soak up its beauty, experience its rich cultures, and live its history. Where would we go? Well, we figured the government had already picked out what was “America’s best” and called it a National Park. That would be a good place to start and getting to all those parks would require an “immersion” of sorts into the local cultures.
Now that dream has come true. With the freedom of being retired, we have few restraints which prevent us from coming and going at will. However, we sometimes get caught up in the chores of day to day living and forget what the real goal is all about. That seems to have been especially true over the past few months.
If you have been reading this blog for very long, you know we were not really happy campers in Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. Sure, there were days when things couldn’t have been better, but more often than not, we were not really satisfied. Our home has wheels, so why didn’t we leave? Apparently, we let our dream get out of focus.
The minute we drove up into the mountains above Lake Tahoe, our minds leapt for joy and our hearts soared. It was not just the mountains (being hikers we’re drawn to these wilderness places), but the sheer beauty of the creation around us. We decided within minutes that we needed to stay longer than the 3 days allotted in our schedule.
How did we let our goal get so out of focus? Perhaps, we were looking at goals not our own. We came to “scout out Texas” as a possible future snow bird roost. None of our goals suggests we want or need a winter base. Did we take on that idea from other RVers whose needs and goals are different from ours? Of course, seeing the National Parks of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona was clearly one of our goals, but we could have done that far less time than the 4 months we were there.
The question of “why we stayed so long” eludes us. Perhaps it was the Rally scheduled in Albuquerque in April. We let our minds get wrapped around the idea that we needed to stay in the area for that event.
One other thing contributed to our unrest. We found the hiking trails less to our liking than in more mountainous areas of the country. It is all a matter of what one is used to, but for us the flat, sandy, desert trails just didn’t have much appeal.
Luckily, we have our heads on straight again. The goal is to travel around this great land soaking up its beauty, experiencing its rich cultures, and living its history. We are not looking for a snow bird roost and if we have a scheduled appointment somewhere, we don’t have to be there until the appointed time. Since hiking is so much a part of our lives, we have the time and freedom to linger in a place where the hiking is good or to seek it out if we are in an area where it isn’t.
I’m glad we had this little talk. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.