by Bob Hazlett
In my later years, after too many in a suit with a mortgage, I became a full-time RVer. I love it; I wish I had started thirty years earlier; I wish I could do it forever; I hope to be doing it on the day I die. I used to hate Sunday afternoon because of impending Monday morning. No more. Between now and the end of my days, the romance of the open road is real for me and I face every day with eager anticipation. This RV life excites all five senses every day.
When traveling, the ever changing view through my windshield exhilarates me – mountains, valleys, plains, rivers; summer, autumn, winter, spring; awesome sunrises, spectacular sunsets. When parked, new places intrigue me – old forts, lighthouses, museums, ghost towns, truck stops, small town diners, backwoods campgrounds, even the folks in the next campsite. Wherever I am I love the scene that greets me every morning when I open my door.
Pulling on an old shirt, jeans, and boots to head out for a day to be spent my way is both comforting and exciting. I never use a watch and seldom a calendar. What time I go out doesn’t matter; what time I return matters even less. Like everyone, my life was a mixture of success and failure, hits and misses, good decisions and bad. My age and my RV lifestyle comfort me with the thought that none of that matters now – and really never did.
Fresh coffee brewing over a campfire, campfire smoke, diesel fumes at a busy truck stop, the smell of horses and cows on a ranch, the smell of the ocean or a mountain pine forest all tickle my nose and make me feel good inside. The smell of ozone in the air after an afternoon cloudburst on the eastern side of a mountain range somewhere makes the world smell clean.
God’s greatest creation was bourbon in a tin cup. I usually sip that quietly at sunset in a nice place. Close behind is fresh brewed coffee in the morning. But I also love lobster and clams at a New England Lobster Pound and Tex–Mex in a little border town along the Rio Grande. Then there is the home cooked special at a little non–descript Momma’s restaurant on some back road in the middle of nowhere, that winds up being a meal I’ll never forget.
The purr of diesel engines in a truck stop; the night sounds in a campground; birds in the morning; screaming tires on the highway; the bugling of an elk on a frosty autumn morning are all part of my world. But the best sound of all is the clang of my fifth–wheel hitch slamming shut signaling the start a new adventure.
I’m glad God gave me five senses so I wouldn’t miss any of it.