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Tuesday, July 1, 2014

After The Squeeze

It was an even tighter squeeze when we awoke at the Flying J this morning.  During the night one truck on our right side pulled out and another pulled in, a little closer.  With some careful backing and guidance from Marti who monitored me from outside, we hooked up the toad, topped off the fuel tank and went on our way.  All this by 9 am.

I’ve received a bunch of questions from folks on our traveling style and why we choose at times to utilize Flying Js, Walmarts and other places that welcome RVs overnight.

We have a different travel style than many RVers.  We are mostly destination travelers, we know where we want to go and we want to get there in the quickest way with minimal traveling off the route we’re on.

We tend to travel longer days than most people (ergo the PDD Driving Club) and spend little time at an overnight stop.  Because we may only be spending a few hours resting after a long day’s drive, we have a bit of heartburn paying for a campground. 

Since the Journey carries almost all our earthly possessions, we run close to the maximum weight ratings for it, making us keep a close eye on our fuel mpg and costs.  We plan routes that are the most direct to our destination and do not as a rule travel too far off the route for an overnight stop. 

Even though we are Passport America members and will use their participating campgrounds, if we have to drive more than a couple of miles to get to them, we’ll pass because we can use spend more money in fuel than we’d save at a PPA park.

Walmarts are usually our first choice for overnight stops.  There are thousands of them across the U. S. and most have the welcome mat out for RVs.  Some don’t allow overnights due to local ordinances, but as we travel, we’ve never run into one.  The lots are big and easy to find an out of the way corner where we can park and open the slides to be comfortable.  We always ask permission at the customer service desk, checking to make sure it’s okay to stay.

Flying Js are our second choice, they are pretty well around the major highways, most have easily accessible fuel pumps and have dedicated RV parking. 

We’ve also stayed at Cracker Barrels, they are RV friendly and it’s tough to pass on one of their breakfasts before heading out in the morning.

As to rest areas, we’ve only stayed at a couple overnight.  We try not to use them because of the hard working truckers that need a place to park for the night due to government regulations on how many hours they can drive in a day. 

We have a diesel generator on the Journey and we use it all the time, it gives us a/c in hot weather and the ability to use electric heat in cooler weather.  We can also use the house fan without engaging the a/c to circulate air and it gives us a nice white noise that drowns out sounds from outside.  We have a satellite dome and use it to enjoy a little TV before turning in and grabbing some shut eye.

When we are “tour traveling”, sure, we slow down, pick great places to stay, things to see and use nice campgrounds, with military campgrounds being one of our favorites. 

So after our tight squeeze, we ended up with this campsite, which was our destination for this trip:

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We are staying at the Naval Weapons Station Earle campground in Colts Neck, NJ for the next four to six weeks.  Why?  Well this is one reason:  Anabelle!   We haven’t seen her since just a couple of hours at a wedding last March.

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She’s had a great time with Mimi Marti already today.  It was worth the quick 187 miles we drove to to get here.  She liked trying out the princess cup we brought her from Disney World.

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Our DIL Amanda is due to deliver a baby sister to Anabelle in another week or two.  We’re here to help out for that special event as well as giving our son Corey a hand on their new house they’ve just moved into, it’s a fixer-upper, but they needed more space for their growing family.

Mimi Marti will get to do the baby sitting, while Corey and I wield some hammers, saws and paint brushes around the house.  And to think I swore I’d never pick up another paint brush after all the painting I did to get our house ready for sale.

Marti doesn’t look too unhappy with her job, does she?  :c)

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Thanks for visiting and feel free to leave a comment.

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13 comments:

  1. Nice to know you have reached your destination and all is well. Enjoy your FAMILY time, making lots of new memories

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  2. You travel pretty well the same as us. No point travelling way off route just to stop for the night. Walmarts,visitor centers and Flying J's, maybe even a Home depot.
    Enjoy your time there, looks like Annabelle and home reno's will keep you busy

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  3. Boy that Anabelle is a cutie! It is a great life when you can be with loved ones at special times and stay as long as you like without wearing out your welcome.

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  4. We all travel the way we feel most comfortable. Nice that you can be there for the arrival of your new grandchild. I am sure Anabelle will appreciate the company and attention.

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  5. Wasn't she just a baby yesterday? :-) I'm sure that your help there is welcome!

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  6. ANOTHER new grandbaby? Anabelle sure has grown up. It's nice you'll be there to help again.

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    1. Yes, this will make number eight, giving us two grandsons and six granddaughters. We need to use a spreadsheet to keep track of all the birthdays. Our three kids have been very productive. ;c)

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  7. You explained very well why many of us prefer the Wal-marts over the RV parks when we're enroute to a destination. We'd rather be on the road a little longer and spend less time setting up in an RV park.

    Glad you're getting your spreadsheet together. Sounds like you're going to need it! I'm thinking your Christmas givings are going to get expensive!

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  8. Since we run 58.5 feet tip to tip we generally park with the semis at Flying Js where we normally use the food services when we pull in as well as pulling out where we fuel up.
    We said the same thing after selling our home but haven't stopped helping others doing painting and renovations.
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

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  9. It does seem that Anabelle was just a baby, but then I remembered she's about our Harper's age. He was really fun this trip. I know Marti is loving her job.

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  10. Enjoy your time with your sweet little Anabelle!

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  11. Wow...Anabelle has sure grown! It seems like just yesterday you were there for her birth! Enjoy your time with them.

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  12. Your reasons for Wally World and Flying J parking are just like ours. It is so convenient. We have come to prefer Sam's Club over Wally World, though, just because Sams seems to have fewer rigs that stay overnight.

    Grands are such a joy. And so is painting and working when you know you can walk away from it in a few weeks.

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