The idea of full time travel came to Odel and me in October of 2002, while we were visiting southern Arizona. We’d never had an RV, but in light of Odel’s planned March 2003 retirement, we were considering alternatives to staying in our house in Sacramento.
Within 3 months, we gave ourselves a cram course on RV’s, made a quick decision, and bought our first (and, so far, only) RV. On April 1, 2003, we took off. Everything we owned was in the motorhome or in the Jeep behind us. Inspired by a whim, this abrupt life change was just right for us.
We’ve never known when we would transition out of fulltiming, or why. A couple of weeks ago, my sister Sydney let us know that a mobile home with a fantastic lake view was for sale in Lake Oaks, the mobile home park where they live, a lovely spot in Diamond Springs, California. She suggested we consider buying it as a home base, close to them, to our parents, and to Rosanna and Auntie Carol. Our immediate response was “no way, we are not ready”. A week later, after a little daydreaming, thought and conversation, we figured it was worth investigating.
We left Boise last Tuesday, and today we a signed contract on our new home base… though NOT the mobile home with a beautiful view that enticed us to drive 600 miles back to California!
We looked at half a dozen mobile homes for sale in Lake Oaks, and were surprised to find that other features beat out a fabulous lake view: a big, FLAT lot (unusual in this hilly, forested park) with a graveled side yard perfectly suited to a kitchen garden; a huge combination living room, dining room, and appealing (large) kitchen; a neighbor on just one side; a low maintenance front yard with huge trees and dappled shade; a flat, covered carport large enough for two cars; lots of privacy; easy proximity to the lake, the lake trail, and the clubhouse (where Odel and Frank can hone their skills on the pool table, or Odel can join the poker players). Another plus: the park has RV storage for $30 a month, and we can walk past Scoopy daily as we circumnavigate the lakeside trail.
The walls are freshly painted, the carpeting brand new. The effect is light, bright, clean and airy, ready to move in. It felt great the minute we walked through the door. We made an offer, they countered, and for $40,000, we have a home base. The site rental is less than what we budget for campground fees; the entire house cost a fraction of the price of our motorhome when we bought it 10 years ago. I can’t quite wrap my head around that.
Escrow will close in about a month, just in time for us to head to Colorado to meet friends from Texas in July. Until then, we’re making lists, budgets, and trying to figure how where we’re gonna get some furniture. :)
Two weeks ago, in Idaho, we had no inkling we would soon be home owners. Today, we’re celebrating this unexpected turn of events. Hooray for the inspiring whim!