The Late Night Epiphany

Hey everyone, this is the conclusion of the story of ‘what came before Interstellar Orchard’ that started last Tuesday. The first part is here, and the second part is here. You’ll want to read those first if you haven’t yet!

December 17, 2010

The past four months since Revolution Day have been full of ups and downs. Some days I feel like anything is possible, and some days I doubt that I’ll ever break free. The weather is getting colder again, and with it comes the “bad” season at work.

Travel photos: Badlands National Park under a rare fog.

Travel photos: Badlands National Park under a rare fog.

I’ve become increasingly agitated by the fact that I still don’t really know what I want to do.

Well, scratch that, I know what I want to do. I want to travel. I loved road trips as a kid and watching programs on the Discovery Channel, and I know I want to get out and see more of the world with my own two eyes. I just don’t know how I’m going to afford to.

Most of these “lifestyle design” bloggers I follow (I’ve found more of them since The Middle Finger Project) integrate a lot of travel into their lives, and they pay for it by working remotely as entrepreneurs (which is a lot easier than holding a physical job in a foreign country).

The idea of being an entrepreneur: setting my own hours, doing work that is both enjoyable and helpful to others from the comfort of my own laptop and pays the bills is of course very appealing. But these bloggers don’t shy away from the fact that there’s a lot of effort involved in working for yourself, and it requires a good idea to start a business with. And even if I’m willing to put in the effort, I can’t think of a good idea.

El Matador State Beach in CA

El Matador State Beach in CA

I like writing, but can’t blog about how exciting my life is, it’s quite ordinary. I’m not passionate enough about any one of my hobbies to feel like I could turn it into a book and make a business out of that.

Then there’s the fact that even if I do somehow find a way to afford to travel the world like these people do, I’d be traveling it alone, which I’m not sure I’d be comfortable with.

I told Julie about Revolution Day about a week after the event happened, and I didn’t get the response I’d been hoping for. I was hoping she’d be as excited as I was, and we’d work together on how to quit our jobs and go travel… but she wasn’t. Oh, she’s supportive and wishes me the best, but this isn’t her dream. While I went through the veterinary technician program because my parents told me I needed to get a college degree and I figured it was as good as any other option, Julie truly loves her vocation and is happy with a more ordinary life. We’re a lot alike in many ways, but different in that respect.

Fall color in Kansas

Fall color in Kansas

10:24pm

I sit bolt upright in bed, heart pounding.

Eureka, I think I’ve got it!

Never mind that tomorrow is a work day and I need to be up before 6 am. I think I’ve found the answer, I know what I’m going to do.

What if I travel domestically instead of internationally, and blog about that?

I grab the notepad sitting on the desk beside my bed and something to write with. I’ve been carrying both with me when I go places so that if inspiration strikes about what I want to do with my life I can write it down.

Red Canyon in Utah

Red Canyon in Utah

There’s a lot less uncertainty involved with domestic travel vs. international travel. I won’t have to worry about my safety traveling alone as much, and I might be able to work temporary jobs as I go and can skip the whole “having to work remotely to travel” thing. That’ll save me years of having to build up a business to the point where I earn enough to continuously travel with.

I’ll go in an RV, an expansion on my vague dreams from last year. Not the huge motorhomes or fifth wheels retired folks travel in, I couldn’t afford that – how about a small, used one? Yes I’ll probably have to get rid of my car since it can’t tow a trailer, but now that I’m thinking of living on the road instead of just taking vacations, it’s a whole different game. I’ve found little information about going full-timing as a young person. Maybe I can start a blog about it and teach other younger people how to do it as I learn myself, that would be enjoyable and fulfilling and could maybe become a business someday…

Lake Tahoe, NV

Lake Tahoe, NV

* * *

And the rest is history.

…Or not. Because it took a ridiculous amount of time to figure out if: A. This was really a feasible lifestyle for a working-age single person on a budget, and B: How to actually get on the road. (After about four weeks of searching, it was Emily at Roads Less Traveled that answered my initial volley of questions about full-timing – in a 2,000 word e-mail chock full of helpful advice – thanks Emily!).

Which catches us up to today. I hope you’ve enjoyed this story of the months leading up to my decision to go full-timing, and now it’s time to focus on another story, your own.

‘Solo Full-time RVing On A Budget’ is now up!Β (Click Here)

Thank you to everyone for following along on this journey and making Interstellar Orchard a great community, whether you’re interested in the guide or not. I’ve learned a lot, experienced some amazing things, and met some wonderfully people since I’ve started traveling. I hope my advice proves helpful to those of you just starting out. Safe travels, and happy trails all.

Related Posts

Becky

At IO I teach people how to ditch the status quo and travel full-time before retirement, and share stories of my adventures (and misadventures) to inspire future nomads and armchair travelers alike. Included at no additional charge: seizing your dreams, living boldly, and making a difference.

35 Comments

  1. Pauline on March 28, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    I totally get the dilemmas. I was researching buying a small RV that I could tow with my Ford Escape. I haven’t gotten it paid off yet, I don’t want to start another round of car payments by buying a bigger vehicle and an RV and I did indeed find quite a few that my car would tow. Small living quarters, to be sure but I did find them. The other problem was where to park it. Parks are expensive. $500 or more a month, and they require you to leave and then come back. So I put the idea on the far back burner for a while, because I need to keep my part time jobs as income.

    But if I could figure out where to park, so that I have water, and cell phone and computer service, I would surely like to know where that would be. P.



    • Becky on March 28, 2015 at 5:33 pm

      Pauline,

      The Ford Escape is actually a popular tow vehicle for teardrop trailers, I know a lot of teardroppers swear by that vehicle. I think trailers like the 13 foot Casita and Scamp could also be towed pretty easily by a Ford Escape.

      Yes, finding inexpensive monthly RV spots can be a challenge. In coastal South Carolina before I started work-camping, I stayed in a private RV park that charged $375 a month, elec, water, sewer and WiFi were included (the WiFi wasn’t very good though). It was very much a no-frills place though – sites were close together, not great scenery. But it was a budget park and that’s what I was looking for. Monthly rates vary a lot depending on the area of the country you’re in too.



  2. Pam on March 25, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    I just downloaded and perused your guide! It’s excellent!

    I’ve been RVing since 1968, so my motivation in purchasing your guide was primarily in support, admiration, and recognition of your ability to consciously manifest your intention.

    It is abundantly clear to me now that the information, resources, and worksheets you’ve included will be extremely useful to me! Your guide includes plenty of useful tips for this old dog to learn.

    Thank you for a job well done!



    • Becky on March 26, 2015 at 4:54 pm

      Thank you very much for purchasing Pam, I’m glad you’ve enjoyed it even though you’re already on the road.

      I’m quite surprised by how much interest there has been in it actually. I wasn’t expecting to have as many sales as I have and I think it’s because people like you who aren’t in the target audience are buying it to show support, and I really appreciate that.

      Safe travels and happy trails!



  3. Frank on March 25, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    So Impressive that you are doing this..
    Great Job, going to get the book now.. heheh, see you on the trails..



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 11:26 pm

      Heya Frank!

      Thanks for purchasing the book, I hope it gives you a lot of good ideas for traveling with your future truck camper.

      Also glad to hear that you’ve found a likely buyer for your teardrop. I’ll cross my fingers that everything goes well on Friday. Safe travels and happy trails.



  4. Rene Kipp on March 25, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    Just bought your book and I’m looking forward to reading it. Wish I didn’t have to go to work today!
    Rene Kipp recently posted..A Necessary EvilMy Profile



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      Thanks Rene and enjoy! I hope the work day goes quickly for you. πŸ˜‰



  5. Sarah on March 25, 2015 at 11:59 am

    I just bought it. Looking forward to some good reading.

    These recent posts have really resonated with me. I am in the same position you were in back then, typing this to you right now. I know what I want — I’ve known for a while now — and my only real wish is that I could meet someone who wants the same ‘crazy’ thing I do.

    Thanks for maintaining this blog. It’s been something of an inspirational lighthouse when I get really frustrated with static living.
    Sarah recently posted..Weeki Wachee WanderMy Profile



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 2:38 pm

      Thanks Sarah and I hope you get a lot of use out of the guide.

      It was pretty tough being in that spot, wanting more but not knowing how to get there. Knowing I was going to have to do it all alone was scary too, I doubted myself frequently and would lie awake at night worrying about what could happen if I failed. But you know what? Going full-timing alone helped so much with my self-confidence. As I took one step after another, they got easier as I learned that the only way you really fail is if you stop trying, and I had a lot more successes than I did set-backs.

      Best of luck to you, things will get better!



  6. Mike on March 25, 2015 at 9:58 am

    Hi Becky,

    Just got the e-Book. Click, click, done. Everything worked perfect. I will read it this week. I enjoyed the last three IO posts about what you were thinking before you got going full-time. Thanks for all of the information, including the info about Sparks Marina. I spent the last three months there and it was great. Very relaxing. Loved walking around the Marina.

    –Mike



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 2:32 pm

      Hey Mike,

      Glad you enjoyed the blogs posts and I hope you get a lot out of the guide.

      Sparks Marina is a great RV park, I hope you had the chance to use the hot tub, one of the best perks imo. πŸ˜‰



  7. Terri on March 25, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Once again, you inspire me. And make me want to get on the road. But i know the tiny house is going to work for me and I will love having two acres, mainly wooded. Just think of all the wild animals I can provide refuge to! Just downloaded the book – NY Times Best Seller List, look out! πŸ™‚

    You’ll have to come by North Carolina at one point in your travels so you can visit with me!
    Terri recently posted..Things and People That Inspire MeMy Profile



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 2:30 pm

      Definitely Terri! NC is beautiful country, I’ve been through there a couple times and always leaving wishing I could see more.

      Your tiny home life is going to be amazing. I grew up in the country in the woods, it’ll be a great experience. πŸ™‚



      • Terri on March 25, 2015 at 3:27 pm

        i definitely hope so! It’s only .75 miles outside of town but when you’re there, you feel like you are out in the country. And once you drive past it and my future neighbor, it IS country! πŸ™‚
        Terri recently posted..Things and People That Inspire MeMy Profile



        • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 7:31 pm

          Sounds lovely!



  8. Joe on March 25, 2015 at 8:23 am

    Becky
    Although we don’t qualify under your guidelines (retirees in two months, bigger budget) we are planning on selling all and living in our RV. Full timing has been our dream, so we identify with your wanderlust. We lived and worked in Europe in the late 1980’s so wandered internationally while working.
    Now we embark on an adventure of epic proportions, at least in our minds. We admire your lifestyle and are enjoying your posts. Hope to stay in touch and perhaps share an adult beverage sometime on the road.



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 9:12 am

      Sounds like great fun Joe! Thank you for reading along and I’m glad you’ve found IO entertaining and informational. Best of luck to you, and yes, it would be great to share an adult beverage on the road. πŸ™‚



  9. Denny on March 25, 2015 at 8:11 am

    Hello Becky,
    Down loaded your e-book last night, will read it tonight (hopefully).

    Good luck with your book,
    Denny



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 9:09 am

      I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it Denny. πŸ™‚ Thank you.



  10. Amber on March 25, 2015 at 8:08 am

    Loved this series of posts! I just bought the e-guide, and I can’t wait to read it. Thanks for sharing with all of us.
    Amber recently posted..What’s your favorite thing about your Airstream? (or other home)My Profile



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 9:08 am

      And thank you for purchasing Amber. πŸ™‚ Glad you liked the story too.



  11. Shelly on March 25, 2015 at 3:30 am

    Hi Becky,

    Just purchased and downloaded your new e-book. The process was easy and quick. I can’t wait to read it πŸ™‚



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 9:07 am

      Thank you Shelly! I hope you get a lot out of it. I was quite surprised by how easy setting up the shopping cart and payment was, tested it myself before I put it up yesterday, hehe. Enjoy!



  12. jonthebru on March 25, 2015 at 1:13 am

    Hey Becky I just loaded the book onto my Paperwhite Kindle as a PDF. It worked very well.
    Maybe it won’t have some of the bells and whistles of a mobi ebook, but it looks and acts well.



    • Becky on March 25, 2015 at 9:06 am

      Great Jon, glad to hear that it works well on a Paperwhite. Thank you very much for buying, and I hope you enjoy it. πŸ™‚



  13. jonthebru on March 24, 2015 at 11:58 pm

    I’m there! Done already!
    I’m a big fan and wish you well in all your endeavors.



  14. Ron on March 24, 2015 at 9:20 pm

    I purchased and read your book and guides today. It is well written and easy to understand and should help those contemplating the lifestyle to overcome their doubts and fears. As a moderator for RV.NET and someone who has been RVing for 45 years I say congratulations and GREAT JOB!!!! Ron



    • Becky on March 24, 2015 at 9:42 pm

      Heya Ron,

      Glad you enjoyed it! I tried my best to make it a useful resource, the kind of thing I would have wanted three years ago when I was starting out.

      Say, would you mind if I used part of your comment as a testimonial for the guide?



      • Ron on March 24, 2015 at 10:04 pm

        Yes it would be fine to use my comment as a testimonial for the guide. And Good Luck with your book sales. Ron



        • Becky on March 24, 2015 at 10:07 pm

          Thanks and thanks Ron. πŸ™‚



  15. Ramen on March 24, 2015 at 2:15 pm

    Congrats on completing the book! Hope I’m one of your first customers =) I’m getting ready to hit the road in a handful of months as a young newbie.



    • Becky on March 24, 2015 at 3:47 pm

      Thanks for purchasing Ramen! I hope you find a lot of utility out of this guide. At a few months out still, there should be a lot of good information in there for you, I wish you the best!

      And if you must know, you’re #…. hold on, let me check…. 18. πŸ™‚



  16. Lacy on March 24, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Hi from a long-time reader. I was so happy to read all of this the other night – I’m glad that you’ve been able to put together something that will not only help others achieve what you’ve been doing but also something that will bring you income to boost your way of funding your lifestyle.

    While I won’t be full time rv’ing any time soon (still raising teens and paying for college!), rv travel is something that we’ve done in the past and I look forward to doing again in the future. In the meantime, reading blogs like yours and watching dreams come true is fun!

    Good Luck!

    Lacy



    • Becky on March 24, 2015 at 3:43 pm

      Lacy,

      Glad you’re enjoying IO and following along, this would be a pretty boring blog without all of the comments and community involvement. πŸ˜‰

      I hope you get the opportunity to go RVing again. I remember being the one reading RVing blogs and imagining what the future might hold – in fact I still keep up with quite a few RV blogs even now, it’s almost like I can be in multiple places at the same time.

      Thanks, and take care!



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