Only Two Months Left!!!

The time is a flyin’ and there are only two more months until I head off to Chilliwack, BC to pick up my camper!!!

Moving along with the prep.   I sold my Honda Civic which was bittersweet.  I knew I had to do it in order to get a proper tow vehicle for my camper but this had been an awesome car and I had intended it to be my last car ever purchased.  The moment the deal was done, I had quite an awakening:  this is REALLY HAPPENING!!!

Friends and family have been awesome.  Cheri drove me out to Mentor a couple of weeks ago to pick up my 2009 Chevy Tahoe Hybrid, purchased from my son (thank you Cher!).  I have never named vehicles but named the Tahoe “The Beast” because it just seemed so monstrously huge to me.  I was very nervous driving it home but got used to it quickly and feel so good about having the power needed to pull the trailer around the country and up and down mountains. Thank you Johnny!  

Pulling a trailer!  Ever done it?  Quite the challenge, I’ve found.  My dear friend of thirty-five years, Patty, took me out last week to practice pulling her boat.  


Easy peasy!

Backing up?

Really difficult!!!

Yesterday she took me out to pull her horse trailer. (This time with the Tahoe)

image (1)

Easy peasy!

Backing up?

Easier than the last time — By George, I think I’m getting it!

I’m so grateful to have had this practice time.  If I had not had these crucial lessons from Patty (WIDE turns, watching the wheels of the trailer in the rear mirror so as not to let them slip into a ditch, allowing enough time when pulling into traffic so the trailer can make it AS WELL AS the car!!!, I would have been in real trouble and very likely knocking over a gas pump and/or jack-knifing when backing up.

I turned in my Build Sheet 7/30.  The Build Sheet is the final list sent to Escape Trailer Industries with all the option-decisions made.  It took me NINE MONTHS to determine this list–kind of like birthing a baby.  Won’t bore you with the details but there are hundreds of decisions, as large as getting solar (YES OF COURSE!!!) and as small as how many 12V outlets to put on the inside and outside of the trailer and if so, do I want USB connections.  :-)  But it’s done, I feel good about my choices–no looking back.

So now it comes down to getting my condo ready to rent and renting it.  I have so many piles on the floor that they’re starting to talk to one another.  Throw away, give away, sell on ebay, store at Johnny’s, store in my storage room, take on the trip west to transfer to the trailer and, of course, the “undecided” pile. Yikes!!!  But . . . it will all get done.  It always does.

I’m very excited about this next life adventure!  Thanks for coming along for the ride!!!


31 thoughts on “Only Two Months Left!!!

  1. Kelly

    Good Luck! I know what you mean about your Honda, I bought one in 2005 and it’s still going strong, I hope to have many more years with it.

    1. Ellen Darby Post author

      Thanks, Kelly. Yeah, I only had 65,000 miles on it and had lovingly cared for it! :) Enjoy yours–they practically live forever!

    1. Ellen Darby Post author

      Thanks Gerri! Yes, will be getting a dog but waiting a bit in order to get comfortable with all the ins and outs of the RV.

  2. Terry Lilian Segal

    Wow, Ellen! I am so thrilled for you that my heart is pounding! Sounds like you are right on track and I so admire you for your courage and adventuresome spirit in making this fantastic experience possible for yourself.
    Very wise of you to get some trailer pulling experience and backing up practice. I would encourage you to not be shy to ask for pointers along the way, as needed. That could definitely save you some risks down the road and honing your skills much more quickly. People are always happy to share helpful tips.
    Very good idea to wait on the canine companion until you have settled into your buddy, “country roads”. Bringing a new dog on board will be a whole new adventure on top of what you are already endeavoring.
    If you do not already have a screen house, such as the one made by Coleman, I highly recommend getting one. Probably available through Amazon. Truly a lifesaver!
    Thanks for keeping us posted step-by-step! So excited for you and so inspired by you! Love and blessings, Terry

    1. Ellen Darby Post author

      Awwww, thanks Terry!
      I guarantee I will not be shy about asking for help. And from what I’ve heard, RV’rs are always more than happy to help out. Am seriously considering the screen house for down the road.
      I DO have a screen door :) but Dave, a guy with “my” camper who I met at the Rally in Canada a few months ago, put his up to show me how it works and it was very cool.
      Yes, as I mentioned on the Escape Trailer Forum, I’m not afraid of traveling alone. Not afraid of camping alone in the wilderness. But learning all the systems (electrical, plumbing, heating, etc.) are “a tad” intimidating. So want to feel very comfortable with all of that before finding my little traveling companion.
      Thanks, again, Terry, appreciate the post–I know you’ve “been there” and can certainly relate!!!

  3. Lee

    This is all so exciting (except maybe the backing up part, which I would dread)! Can’t wait for my vicarious adventure to begin.

  4. Patty

    Wow! Have I known you for 35 years? All wonderful! You are definitely an inspiration young lady. Look forward to living vicariously through your blogs. Safe travels my dear friend!

  5. Lucy & Charlie

    I loved reading this post, especially the trailering lessons! That will help you a lot…. I could benefit from that. Charlie doesn’t think we need it, cause he knows how to tow. Me on the other hand is another story….. Maybe through osmosis? Lol… We will figure it out!
    See you soon… On our way out to Chilliwack!!


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