Saturday, October 10, 2009
Reflections on the RV Lifestyle--Domestic Chores
Having been out and about every day this week, I had to spend today catching up on household chores. The question of house cleaning has come up a few times by various friends and family members. Some have seemed shocked that we have to run the vacuum and go to the grocery. Others understand the need for cleaning and have wondered how many minutes it takes. I can understand where they are coming from.
Most of our friends and all of our family, even those with RVs, are not full-timers. When they travel it is for a week or two, perhaps even a month. They are on “vacation”. While on vacation they usually don’t clean, cook, or do the laundry. Since that is their only experience with travel, that is all they can relate to. I understand that--I was the same way until we started full-timing. This Everest is our home and we have to carry on with all the domestic chores we would have with a house or condo. The only thing we don’t have to worry about is maintaining a yard. Of course, we didn’t do that when we lived in a condo anyway.
I, myself, have wondered if we spend more or less time with those chores than we did when we had a stick home. Certainly, it takes much less time to run the vacuum over 380 sq ft than it did over 1500 sq ft. However, in the condo we didn’t track in as much sand, gravel, leaves, grass, etc as we do now. I have to vacuum at least twice, sometimes three times a week. I also clean the bathroom more often. I love my new refrigerator, but the freezer is not frost free so I have to do that chore once a month. I hadn’t defrosted a freezer since frost free was invented who can remember when.
The outside of an RV is a whole different ball game from a house. This thing is like a car--it needs to be washed and waxed. Gene does that about once a year and it seems to take forever. When we’re towing, the front end cap can almost be black with bugs. On our trip from Washington back to Tennessee, he washed that about 3 times. Also when towing our outside windows get road grim on them, especially when it’s raining. It is a constant battle to keep the windows clean. Occasionally, we have been in campgrounds with dripping pine trees. The pine sap has to be gotten off, as well.
We’ve already had the discussion about the time it takes to do grocery shopping. That is also true with laundry. Since we don’t have a washer and dryer, I use the campground facilities. I can usually put two loads in at a time which is quicker than doing one at a time in my own washer. However, I usually stay with the laundry rather than throwing a load in and going about some other activity.
So even though it doesn’t actually take as long to do the chores, I think we spend as much time doing them as we always have.
Today was chore day for me, but I might as well do chores since it is a drab, rainy day outside. Gene has spent much of today doing some preliminary research for our Florida trip. Now, that’s a worthwhile chore.