One Year On The Road

Towards the end of February we passed the anniversary date marking one year full-time on the road. We didn’t get a chance to celebrate this milestone. As a matter of fact, we didn’t even know it happened. The date came and went as we were busy preparing to hit the road once again and failed to recognize our accomplishment.

Reflecting on the last year we have come a long way and yet it seems as though we are just getting started. Perhaps this is because we began our adventures in February, but it took another seven months before we actually started living life on our own terms.

As we set out one year ago, we were full of excitement and anticipation. The first month was surreal, yet familiar, as we stayed at a campground close to home and one we had visited on several occasions prior. It was a good starting point for us to slow down, take a breath and get adjusted to our new lifestyle. Unfortunately, this brief moment of tranquility was soon replaced by shocking uncertainty, along with an extended stay in the parking lot of a California body shop, after a car plowed into us leaving the campground. You can read that story here.

Once the dust settled and repairs were completed, we cautiously made our way to South Dakota just in time for our DMV appointments. It was exciting to finally become South Dakota residents and move one step closer to severing ties with California. From there we made a quick exit south to Utah escaping the freezing temperatures and spring snow storms making their way across the northern plain states.

While in Utah, we were presented with an opportunity to work at the campground in exchange for a free space and a small wage. We gladly accepted the offer despite Mrs. RVF still working a full-time job as it was cost effective and gave us some valuable experience for future work camping opportunities. Kudos to Mrs. RVF for working 70 hours a week during what was supposed to be a winding down period for her.

After four months in Utah we set off once again for a three month stay in Sedona, AZ. Soon after arriving in Sedona, Mrs. RVF worked her final days as a corporate employee and we entered early retirement confident that our years of planning would allow us to live our best life for years to come.

In Sedona, we were at peace. Life moved at a pace that was relaxing and free of worry. We hiked long desert trails and explored the tranquil landscapes of the red rocks whenever possible; typically on weekdays to avoid crowds. We visited local shops, restaurants and craft breweries, often venturing out of our comfort zone to try something new and different. Best of all, we met a lot of people, made new friends and enjoyed some good times.

As our time in Sedona came to a close, we reluctantly packed up and headed to Las Vegas, NV where we planned to spend the winter months. There were few bright spots on this leg of our journey. Aside from our son flying into town to visit for the holidays, seeing some friends, and free Fireball shots in Wal-Mart, there were not many highlights.

We enjoyed some sightseeing and walking the Vegas strip, but there is only so many times you can do that. We had planned to see many of our friends from California during our time in town, but most of those plans fell through partially or altogether which was disappointing.

Disappointing is probably the optimal word to describe our time in Vegas. We had our moments there, but the area around the resort, already not great, had deteriorated further since our last visit. This, along with the cancellation of most of our planned meet-ups with friends, caused a kind of malaise.

Instead of getting out and enjoying life, it felt more like we were just waiting for the weather to improve so we could move on. And when the day finally came for us to leave, we couldn’t get on the road quick enough. Our laser focus on getting out of this situation is probably another reason why we didn’t pay any attention to the calendar. Having already decided we were leaving Vegas early we wanted to get packed and get on the road to Texas where we knew we would be happier.

The first year of our journey was both satisfying and turbulent. We certainly had our share of adversity. We were able to deal with those situations and come out stronger on the other side. As we begin our second year on the road we are more knowledgeable and better prepared. We know that the unexpected always lurks around the corner, but we do our best to live in the now and not worry about what might or could happen.

In the first year we visited nine states and plan to visit fourteen more in our second year. We look forward to sharing our travels with you here on our blog and on social media as events unfold.

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See you on the road…………..


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2 thoughts on “One Year On The Road

  1. Bill – I am just a blue collar factory worker trying to reach financial independence by spending less, earning more, saving and investing.
    Bill says:

    It’s hard to believe a year has already gone by! I look forward to following your journey.

  2. Accidentally Retired – Accidentally Retired is my journey from being a CEO to finding myself accidentally retired at the age of 36. I never intended to retire early (though I may have fantasized about it), but Accidentally Retired is my exploration of Financial Independence, Early Retirement, Enjoying Life and more.
    Accidentally Retired says:

    Sorry for the rough time in Vegas. Next time stay in Phoenix 😉 it’s a great place to winter!

    Alas, look forward to the next part of your journey. As I have found retirement isn’t always cupcakes and rainbows. You have to continue to find and do the things that make you happy and give you meaning.

    Anyways, safe travels!

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