Dreams are not static, just as we as people are not static. Our needs and desires change as we are introduced to new ideas and grow. This is a concept I’ve been over before on the blog and discuss in detail in my book ‘The Little Guide to Dreaming Big’.
To me, it was a kind of death to stay locked in a traditional employment situation, knowing I’d be stuck working 40 hours a week until retirement. I knew in the depth of my heart that I wasn’t meant for that kind of environment, and moving from Wisconsin to the coast of South Carolina worked for a while, but it was only a temporary measure.
Full-time RVing is a much better fit. It meets my intense desire for novelty and for more personal time to pursue my interests. But still, dreams evolve.
In high school, I took Japanese to meet my foreign language requirement. Primarily I chose it because I was big into manga, anime, and video games, being the geek that I am. But while studying Japanese culture, I learned of a word that I still remember years later: kaizen.
Kaizen means ‘continual improvement’. Originally, the word was applied to business activities and processes. It was first practiced after the second world war, and has since been utilized in healthcare, government, life-coaching, and other industries around the world.
We should be thankful for what we have, every single day. We should appreciate where we are, and accept that life is lived in the now, and not in the future. But we should also stay hungry. I love this wonderful nomadic life I’ve built for myself. But it could always be better.
On Tuesday, October 24th I ordered my new rig! A change I’d mentioned was coming about two months ago. There was much speculation about what kind of RV I’d choose, but longtime readers who’ve been following the comments on my posts for years know that I’ve been dropping hints about teardrops since summer of 2014, and I even toured a teardrop factory in spring of 2015 and mentioned an interest in going smaller.
The photo in this post is of Hiker Trailer West, located in Denver, CO. When I showed up for my tour at 10:30 am last Tuesday, I was already 95% sure this is what I wanted, but the tour really cinched it for me. I placed my order at the end of the tour.
It won’t be ready until September. Yes, you read that right. I won’t be getting my new little home for over 10 more months. So yes, I’ll be selling Cas at some point, but not immediately. When I’m ready to sell, I’ll announce it here on the blog first, to give you readers first dibs. In the meantime, I’ll be continuing to travel in Cas as usual.
Change is a scary thing, even when it’s happening to someone else, and despite this being a joyous decision and something I’m very happy about, I expect to hear some resistance. For those who wonder why a tiny trailer, and why Hiker Trailer in specific, I’ll be writing more about that soon. For those who think I made a mistake by choosing what I did, let me remind you that we are all different and just because you wouldn’t be happy in a teardrop, doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be. For those who are thinking about a Casita and are now worried that because I’m getting out of mine means you won’t be happy in yours: don’t be. Casitas are still great little trailers. I’ve loved my time in mine, and I still feel five years later that I made the best decision for my wants and needs at the time when I chose one – I have no regrets. It’s just that my wants and needs are changing, and so my home is changing too.
In the meantime, if you’re in the RV market yourself and hoping, desperately, that you don’t make the wrong choice for your wants and needs here are some resources to help:
- How to Choose the Best Type of RV (blog post)
- An Idea for Choosing the Right Size RV (blog post)
- ‘Solo Full-time RVing On A Budget’ (my guide on preparing to go full-timing. There’s a chapter and worksheet devoted to RV selection inside. Note that as we speak I’m working on a physical copy of this book, so those who prefer to read offline should stay tuned for that announcement later this year!).
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Announcement two, a more recent development. Visitors to the blog will notice that all of the Amazon affiliate links are gone (well, they’re not gone off all the older posts yet, but I’m working on it).
My affiliate account was terminated yesterday (the 30th) by Amazon. If you have my link bookmarked in your web browser, or click through it in any of the IO e-mails or old posts, it’ll still take you to the Amazon site where you can shop. But I no longer get credit for anything you buy through the links, so you might as well stop using them.
It was terminated due to changes in the rules about what you can and cannot do as part of the program. I was violating these rules by using generic links to the homepage instead of specific products, implying that using the link supported this site, and having the link send out in the IO mailing list e-mails.
Having done some research, I’ve discovered that I could probably get IO approved for the program again. But it would take months of jumping through hoops (no chance of making the holiday rush), I’d have to sign up for a new account which would mean switching all my links over to a new one, and the new rules mean that in order to make any money I’d have to advertise products I’ve never used myself, or plaster IO with banners. Being a budget traveler and something of a minimalist, I can’t in good conscious promote consumerism for the sake of consumerism (experiences are more important than stuff!) nor would I feel right using my influence to peddle things that I’ve never tried or worse, have tried and don’t love. So no, I will not be re-applying for the program at this time.
I’d recommend finding another blogger/creator to support by using their Amazon link so that someone still gets credit for your purchases, but it’s looking like Amazon is going to be cracking down on people who use the program like this (which is how most RV bloggers use it) so I’m really not sure what to say. If you’re a blogger who is in the program, read over the Operating Agreement as soon as you can and if you’re not in compliance, make the necessary changes if you want to keep your account!
So, change. Sometimes we choose it, and sometimes it is forced upon us. Thank you everyone who has supported IO through the years by using my Amazon link! If you’d like to continue to help at absolutely no cost, you can follow IO on Facebook, Instagram, and/or YouTube; comment on posts and videos (both which help with search engine ratings); and share IO with people whom you feel would find it helpful. For those who wish to show monetary support, the PayPal donate button is still at the right-hand side of the website where it’s always been, and to fill in the gap left by Amazon, I’m going to be launching a Patreon page.
If you don’t know what Patreon is, more about that will be coming up but rest assured, the blog will continue to update regularly and you will not need to pay to access it. This will just be another way for those who want to show their appreciation for what I do here on IO by monetary means to do so, completely optional, and get a couple extra perks in the process.
Phew, what a week! Safe travels and happy trails everyone. I’m looking forward to sharing more about my new trailer (including a bunch more pictures) coming up soon! Onwards and upwards.