Should health keep you from fulltime RVing?
"In our travels and contacts, we meet folks who practically sit on the edge of their chairs as we talk about RV experiences. Sometimes they sigh, because they feel that health problems prevent them from partaking of the lifestyle. Think of the pills, the doctor visits, the therapies.
On the other hand, think of sitting at home, dreading the coming of winter, knowing that the dark skies and cold days will chill your bones. Like it or not, the older we get, the more most of us struggle with health issues. Does that mean the RV lifestyle is out of reach?
Granted, some have health issues that really do "ground" them. But on the other hand, some who've taken the plunge and worked around the obstacles have found that RVing, far from being out of reach because of health problems, has actually helped them have a more positive outlook on their problems, and in some cases, actually decreased their health problems.
We're moved to comment on this, as yet another RVer with a chronic and serious health issue has been profiled in the media. Years ago, Harvey Wells found out he had kidney trouble. He managed to work his way through it, but things got worse, and in 1988 Harvey had a kidney transplant. Life was pretty good, until 2006, when the transplant failed, and Harvey found himself making three times-a-week visits to a dialysis center. Dialysis appointments definitely put a hang-up on any RVing for Wells and his wife. Harvey reports that while the dialysis kept him alive, it also left him tired and worn out.
Two years ago the picture changed. Harvey got a portable dialysis machine for his own use. Rather than head off to a regional center for his sessions, Wells plugs into his home machine six times a week. More sessions per week, true, but each of those sessions was shorter than when he had to go into a center. And now for Harvey, his "home" sessions are where he parks it. That is, Harvey, his wife, and two grandchildren are now engaged in a cross-country motorhome trek, seeing sights, hitting football games, and spreading the news about his new freedom. He adds, doubling up the number of dialysis sessions per week has actually helped him feel more energetic. Yes, it took some planning, and no doubt a lot of cooperation with doctors, but Harvey is having a ball.
Other friends of ours too, are looking to getting out on the road. An older couple, he who struggles with internal issues that mandate twice monthly injections at the doctor's office, and she who doesn't ever know when her energy level will leave her needing the comfort of home, are now preparing to make a snowbird journey to the southwest. By working with his doctor, the gentleman has secured the necessary medications and the training to self-administer. For her, having the motorhome with them is unlike traveling in a car and "moteling it." If her strength departs her, their own motorhome being readily available simply means staying put "at home on the road," taking it easy until her body feels ready to go again. And with the clear days of the southwest, we'll wager easily that her "up days" will probably far outnumber the "down days" she's struggled with before.
Don't let the pains and problems of health cause you to think that RVing is out of the question. Question your doctor, tell them what you'd like to do, find out if there's a way. You'd be surprised how many doctors recommend travel to a healthier climate when the possibility exists."
When the time does come when Rvers can't travel:
Happy End of the Road for RVers: Assisted Living on Wheels
"Pearl and Bud Crispell hit the road in their RV the day after they retired in 1976. And for decades, that's where they stayed, living in their 40-foot motor home and traversing the country at will.
But, as is the eventual story of all road warriors, the day came when they hit the proverbial dead end. Unable to manage some aspects of their life and care, living on fixed incomes and not wanting to become a burden to friends and relatives, the Crispells pulled in to the country's only assisted-living RV Park, the Escapees Care Center in Livingston, Texas. The nonprofit adult day care and residency program, featured in a Columbia University News 21 profile, bills itself as a refuge for RVers whose travels are permanently ended because of age or temporarily interrupted because of an illness.
For a monthly fee of $824 per person, or $1,236 a couple, residents get a spot to park their wheeled homes; three meals a day, every day; two loads of laundry service a week; light housekeeping of their unit; transportation to medical appointments; and access to registered nurses on call 40 hours a week.
The Care Center also functions as a land-based community hub for the residents, providing daily activities, concerts, and a place to socialize. Not to mention a chance to get behind the wheel again: Last Father's Day, residents competed in blind golf cart races. The drivers had to be legally blind or wear a blindfold while their sighted navigators yelled directions around an obstacle course of parking cones.
At 93 and 90, Pearl, a retired nurse, and Bud, a former IBM engineer, are not without age-related health issues. But her mind is "sharper than my husband wishes it was," Pearl says. And she has no desire to trade the small confines of their RV for a bigger "land-based residence," as Escapees call conventional houses. "We didn't retire to entertain our family," she says.
Right now the center's 35 sites are all occupied, by vehicles ranging from minivans to 40-footers. Each unit has its own fresh water supply and a private septic system. While a few residents are in their 90s, most are in the mid- to late 80s, says Robert Brinton, the facility's executive director and on-site manager. The center doesn't have a waiting list or immediate plans to expand. Openings occur and there just always seems to be someone who wants it, he said."
Gallery: The Escapees Care Center in Livingston, Texas
"Brinton himself joined the Escapees RV Club in 2000 precisely because it has the Care Center. The 60,000-member strong club is founded on the "caring and sharing" principle, which appealed to him, Brinton says. Member donations built the Care Center, which has no mortgage and is thus able to keep expenses low."
More at: http://realestate.aol.com/blog/2011/10/28/happy-end-of-the-road-for-rvers-assisted-living-on-wheels/
Unclutter your life for fulltime RV living
"For those who would take up the road to fulltime RVing, unloading clutter from their lives is a necessity, unless they can somehow bring everything along. For some, it almost becomes a chicken and egg thing: Do they take up RVing to rid their life of clutter, or do they rid their life of clutter to go RVing? For most it is the latter, but surprisingly, some are taking up the RV lifestyle to simplify their lives, and getting rid of possessions is part and parcel. Read more."
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Automatic valve shuts off propane. Extra layer of RV safety:
"You may recall this gadget: Something happens, your propane alarm signals, and BANGO, the flow of LP from your tank is automatically cut off. It was once standard equipment in motorhomes, but then someone in the industry decided it was too much of an expense. But no worries, you can buy and install this enhanced safety device that not only shuts off your LP at the sound of the LP alarm, but a system that will do the same if the carbon monoxide detector "pipes up" as well. Read more."
~Coordinate your wardrobe around one or two main colors. You can then mix and match them more easily so you don't need as many clothes -- nor as much closet space.
~Every so often, flush out your RV galley sink drain. Bring the hose into the RV and give the drain a good flooding. It washes down particles of crud that collects, especially if you do a lot of boondocking and sometimes skimp on how much water you use.
~If you are traveling with pets who routinely take a prescription medicine, your primary veterinarian may be able to mail you the prescriptions on a regular basis. It may be easier and less costly than going to a new vet each time.
~Goodbye Fruit flies:… take a small glass, fill it ½" with Apple Cider Vinegar and 2 drops of dish washing liquid; mix well.. Flies are drawn to the cup and gone forever! (I tried this, and it does catch them)
"As soon as one has more income than outgo you have established financial independence. Independence of any kind warms the soul."
Many Notable Things Happened On This Day:
Lincoln gives State of the Union address, Dec 1, 1862:"On this day in 1862, President Abraham Lincoln addresses the U.S. Congress and speaks some of his most memorable words as he discusses the Northern war effort.
Lincoln used the address to present a moderate message concerning his policy towards slavery. Just 10 weeks before, he had issued his Emancipation Proclamation, which declared that slaves in territories still in rebellion as of January 1, 1863, would be free. The measure was not welcomed by everyone in the North--it met with considerable resistance from conservative Democrats who did not want to fight a war to free slaves.
The November 1862 elections were widely interpreted as a condemnation of the emancipation plan. The Democrats won the New York governorship and 34 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, though the Republicans gained five Senate seats and maintained control of most state legislatures. Lincoln used the State of the Union address to present a more moderate position on emancipation. He mentioned gradual, compensated emancipation of slaves, which many moderates and conservatives desired, but he also asserted that the slaves liberated thus far by Union armies would remain forever free.
Lincoln's closing paragraph was a statement on the trials of the time: "The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present...fellow citizens, we cannot escape history...The fiery trial through which we pass will light us down, in honor or dishonor, to the latest generation. We say we are for the Union. The world will not forget that we say this. We know how to save the Union...In giving freedom to the slave, we ensure freedom to the free--honorable alike in what we give, and what we preserve. We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last, best hope of earth."
Dec 1, 1824:
Congress decides outcome of presidential election"On this day in 1824, Congress acts to decide a presidential election for the first time in history, giving the presidency to John Quincy Adams. A clause in the Constitution's 12th Amendment puts the power of deciding an election in the hands of Congress if no candidate receives a majority of the Electoral College votes.
Four candidates had originally campaigned for the presidency in 1823-24 and each man's support base generally reflected the geographic region from which he came. John Quincy Adams, the son of former president and founding father John Adams, was a New Englander and a Federalist who believed in a strong centralized government. Andrew Jackson, who had gained popularity in the wake of his successful military leadership in the War of 1812 against Britain, represented the western "frontier" state of Tennessee and espoused the Democratic Party ideal of strong states' rights without undue federal interference. A third candidate, William Crawford, was from the deep southern state of Georgia; he was slightly more conservative than Jackson. The fourth candidate was Henry Clay, the speaker of the House, who hailed from Kentucky and leaned closer to John Quincy Adams in political philosophy.
On Election Day, Adams and Jackson led the pack in electoral votes, but Clay and Crawford had garnered enough votes to prevent either from winning a majority. Adams received 84 electoral votes; Jackson won 99. By the terms of the 12th Amendment, Congress was tasked with deciding between the two candidates, who could not have been more different in style or policy. Adams, described by his opponents as a cold, calculating Yankee elitist contrasted with Jackson, who was portrayed (not inaccurately) as hot-headed and hell-bent on destroying federal institutions (such as the National Bank) that George Washington and the Federalists had worked hard to establish.
In the end, Speaker Clay used his influence to convince fellow lawmakers to cast their vote for Adams and he emerged victorious. Not surprisingly, Adams chose Henry Clay to be his secretary of state, an act that enraged Jackson and helped to unite what had been a fragmented Democratic Party. In the election of 1828, Jackson easily beat the incumbent Adams, and went on to serve until 1837."
Dec 1, 1955: Rosa Parks ignites bus boycott.
"In Montgomery, Alabama, Rosa Parks is jailed for refusing to give up her seat on a public bus to a white man, a violation of the city's racial segregation laws. The successful Montgomery Bus Boycott, organized by a young Baptist minister named Martin Luther King, Jr., followed Park's historic act of civil disobedience.
"The mother of the civil rights movement," as Rosa Parks is known, was born in Tuskegee, Alabama, in 1913. She worked as a seamstress and in 1943 joined the Montgomery chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
According to a Montgomery city ordinance in 1955, African Americans were required to sit at the back of public buses and were also obligated to give up those seats to white riders if the front of the bus filled up. Parks was in the first row of the black section when the white driver demanded that she give up her seat to a white man. Parks' refusal was spontaneous but was not merely brought on by her tired feet, as is the popular legend. In fact, local civil rights leaders had been planning a challenge to Montgomery's racist bus laws for several months, and Parks had been privy to this discussion.
Learning of Parks' arrest, the NAACP and other African American activists immediately called for a bus boycott to be held by black citizens on Monday, December 5. Word was spread by fliers, and activists formed the Montgomery Improvement Association to organize the protest. The first day of the bus boycott was a great success, and that night the 26-year-old Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., told a large crowd gathered at a church, "The great glory of American democracy is the right to protest for right." King emerged as the leader of the bus boycott and received numerous death threats from opponents of integration. At one point, his home was bombed, but he and his family escaped bodily harm.
The boycott stretched on for more than a year, and participants carpooled or walked miles to work and school when no other means were possible. As African Americans previously constituted 70 percent of the Montgomery bus ridership, the municipal transit system suffered gravely during the boycott. On November 13, 1956, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Alabama state and Montgomery city bus segregation laws as being in violation of the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. On December 20, King issued the following statement: "The year old protest against city buses is officially called off, and the Negro citizens of Montgomery are urged to return to the buses tomorrow morning on a non-segregated basis." The boycott ended the next day. Rosa Parks was among the first to ride the newly desegregated buses.
Martin Luther King, Jr., and his nonviolent civil rights movement had won its first great victory. There would be many more to come.
Rosa Parks died on October 24, 2005. Three days later the U.S. Senate passed a resolution to honor Parks by allowing her body to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda.
Dec 1, 1990:
Chunnel makes breakthrough"Shortly after 11 a.m. on December 1, 1990, 132 feet below the English Channel, workers drill an opening the size of a car through a wall of rock. This was no ordinary hole--it connected the two ends of an underwater tunnel linking Great Britain with the European mainland for the first time in more than 8,000 years.
The Channel Tunnel, or "Chunnel," was not a new idea. It had been suggested to Napoleon Bonaparte, in fact, as early as 1802. It wasn't until the late 20th century, though, that the necessary technology was developed. In 1986, Britain and France signed a treaty authorizing the construction of a tunnel running between Folkestone, England, and Calais, France.
Over the next four years, nearly 13,000 workers dug 95 miles of tunnels at an average depth of 150 feet (45 meters) below sea level. Eight million cubic meters of soil were removed, at a rate of some 2,400 tons per hour. The completed Chunnel would have three interconnected tubes, including one rail track in each direction and one service tunnel. The price? A whopping $15 billion.
After workers drilled that final hole on December 1, 1990, they exchanged French and British flags and toasted each other with champagne. Final construction took four more years, and the Channel Tunnel finally opened for passenger service on May 6, 1994, with Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and France's President Francois Mitterrand on hand in Calais for the inaugural run. A company called Eurotunnel won the 55-year concession to operate the Chunnel, which is the crucial stretch of the Eurostar high-speed rail link between London and Paris. The regular shuttle train through the tunnel runs 31 miles in total--23 of those underwater--and takes 20 minutes, with an additional 15-minute loop to turn the train around. The Chunnel is the second-longest rail tunnel in the world, after the Seikan Tunnel in Japan."
Misty and I went to get Jay, so she and Maddie had their leashed little walk-about on the roads down there by the lake.
Jay couldn't understand why it had taken Ray and I all morning to put the clear vinyl up on the left side of the screen porch a week or so ago.
But after we did the right side yesterday morning, he understood. The BBQ table, chairs, and cat perch had to be moved out of the way. Then wooden strips, like screen molding, had to be stapled over all the edges of the vinyl so it doesn't tear and the cold can't get in. There is only a 300 watt heater for the plants out there
We had to get more strips down out of the rafters in the workshop.
Prime couldn't wait for us to get the kitty perch screwed back in place.
We had intended to disconnect, move, and reconnect the plant sink cabinet out there as there is a small gap in the floor next to the wall, which needs to be fixed. This should have been done years ago, as lizards have found their way in and been attacked by the cats. Then I have to catch the tail-less little critters and take them outside to safety.
But there wasn't enough time, so hopefully that will be done today.