Lesson learned: Be patient.

Mike and I are the new proud owners of a Class B RV. We wanted a convenient little home for us to travel in that wouldn’t limit us to where we could stay or park. With our new baby in possession, we decided our first trip would be up to the lake property. A place where we could practice, play, and make sure that all appliances and functions worked on the mini-home.

Saturday morning, we woke early to clouds and rain. We weren’t going to let a little rain spoil our weekend. We loaded up the RV and tried not to get soaked as we quickly ran back and forth. Neither of us expected the sudden crack of lightning or the thunder that came next. The thunder sounded like the sky had slammed into the earth in one powerful motion. I know I jumped, and I’m pretty sure the house jumped too. I think that’s the closest I’ve been to where lightning hit the ground.  We weren’t sure if we should leave, but we decided, once again, that we weren’t going to let a little storm change our minds.

Getting out of Hudson, the rain let up; however, that was just a tease. It rained through the construction zone. I swore the cement dividers set up on both sides of the lane were narrower than normal, or they seemed that way in the RV. Mike’s knuckles were white and embedded into the steering wheel. My right hand dug into the door handle. My body kept leaning either to the right or to the left as if it were to help the RV stay centered on the road. I had to peel my hand away from the door once the road construction ended.

And then it down poured. Torrential rain swooped down and flooded the roads. My husband’s driving ability was thoroughly tested as we kept on. So was his patience. Peering between the wiper blades and cursing himself for not Rain-Xing the windows, he was ready to turn back for home. He gave it another half hour. His patience paid off and the rain did stop. He was happy that I didn’t have to give him a shot of heroin to calm him down. (Disclaimer: all in laughs – never tried or will try heroin). I had to give him kudos. His patience was tried; he lost it a few times, but he did gain control.

Once up at the lake, our next adventure was trying to position the RV in the right spot. I never realized how uneven the ground can be. We moved the van in different spots and tried using the air compressors inside. We watched the levels attached to the front and back like hawks. Patience it took to get the damn bubble in between the lines on the level.

We did this as the day became super-hot and the sun roasted us like a pair of marshmallows. We high-fived it when we found a somewhat level place to park. We hooked up the electricity and then we tried reaching the hose from the RV to the well. Four feet short. We thought of different, creative ways of filling the fresh water tank, like using a funnel on the RV side and aim the hose so the water would shoot like a fountain into the funnel and down the tank. At that point, we were ready to say “screw it” and get by without water. We had the well and buckets to haul water if needed.

And then we remembered why we went up there. We knew up front that it would take us time getting used to the RV. We knew that we’d have troubles figuring out how to work the different gizmos. The lake property was the perfect place to be. We took a break to step away from the frustration, and then we started over. Being patient and calmer, we backed up the RV, put water in the holding tank, found a new place to level the RV (where one bubble hit the mark and the other off by a bit), and then hooked up the electricity.

Now that we’ve had the weekend to test all the appliances, the electricity, the generator, and the propane in the RV, we feel better knowing that our initial run was done on familiar turf. Now we can take our first trip to the campground. We’ll head off early, park the RV into the site, and one of us will say, “Okay, now what is it that we’re supposed to do first?”

Remember to be patient.


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