A Few Random Musings & Updates
My last post was a blast & clearly resonated with many of you. There’s no doubt those of us who have the travel bug generally enjoy the RV lifestyle and that clearly includes many of you! Not everyone adapts to it (and I’ve written a little about that) but those we’ve met that have made it past a year typically end up loving it. I’ve been fortunate in that I’ve had this bug all my life and been able to express it by living in different countries, immersing myself in different cultures and exploring the world. Our time RVing is very simply an extension of this wonderlust….and a pretty darn neat one at that. There’s no other form of travel I’ve found so stimulating, and so comfortable (“the beast” is pure luxury, baby!).
Will we always RV? Very likely not. Both Paul and I enjoy changes in life. Since we met we’ve lived in Europe and Asia, backpacked, hiked and RV’d in several countries. The RV lifestyle is one of the most “fitting” things we’ve ever done since it combines so many of the things we both love, but one day we’ll feel the itch to do something else. I have no idea where we’ll go from here, but I have no fear of our next step. Only the deep thankfulness that we’ve taken advantage of all the paths we’ve been given so far. Don’t worry though, we’re not talking about getting off the road anytime soon. These are just musings left over from the comments and thoughts of the last post. Thanks so much to those who shared their insights!
Getting back to the present world, hubby has flown off for a few days to attend a bachelor party while the paws and I hang in lovely Washoe Lake. I thought this would be as good a time as any to post a few random (and hopefully interesting) updates for you. Here ya go:
We’re Done With Panel Tilting (for now)
Those of you with a good eye will notice “the beast” no longer has tilted solar panels despite the fact that we haven’t had electric hookups since March. It’s gotten to the time of year where the sun is now high enough in the sky that tilting doesn’t make much difference to our input anymore. We generally tilt from around beginning October through end March. After that we usually let it be. Those of you interested in this kind of thing can play around with the sun models in this post and see for yourself. It’s just a fun little curio that I thought some might be interested in.
Millenicom Increased Their Price (but it’s still the best deal out there)
We switched to Millenicom for our internet in 2012 and have been extremely happy with their service ever since (you can read about why we switched HERE). However just this month their price increased from $69.99 to $89.99. Ouch! Despite the ramp I still consider it the very best deal out there for users of larger quantities of data. 20Gb running on the Verizon network for $90 is still a bargain and none of the other suppliers offer a comparative level of cross-country coverage for that price, even with their shared plans. This post from Technomadia does a great job of explaining some of the costs & changes in more detail. Bottom line is that we’re sticking with Millenicom for our internet and Straight Talk (who we’ve also been very happy with) for our cellphone. The combo keeps working well for us.
- Internet Connectivity On The Road -> Our New Rockin’ No-Contract 4G Upgrade!
- Cheap Cellphone Service With Straight Talk -> Saving $$ & Severing Verizon Ties!
I’m Playing Around With Pinterest (and hubby is playing with Instagram)
I have very limited (personal) patience for social media outlets, so it takes a lot to get me moving on anything new. Pinterest is hardly “new”, but I’m playing around with it. So far, the absolute best feature I’ve found is the pin-mapping option which just seems so well-suited for RV travel. I’ve created a mapped board for the Washington coast to help plan our travels/visits there this summer and am pinning a few other things I find interesting too. I must admit it’s pretty neat. I’m still unsure how far I’ll go with this site, but you’re welcome to check out my Washington board and link-up. Hubby, who is much more of an “early adopter” than I am is also playing around with Instagram with the bonus that we now have a lot more pics of me than ever before (not sure how I feel about that LOL). If you’re on that medium you’re welcome to check him out too.
There’s A Cool New APP For Public Lands
For those of you who enjoy boondocking you’ll know that it takes time & patience to find legal places you can go. I use a combination of word-of-mouth, maps, ranger information, forums and scouting to find most of our spots. Half the battle is just finding out where those public land boundaries are. We have several of the Benchmark Maps which are perfect for this (and we love them), but there is now also a sweet new app called Public Lands (available for both Android & iOS) which adds to our arsenal. The cool thing about this is that it allows you to see public land boundaries cross-country, overlaid with satellite. This means you can now “follow” a road on satellite and see exactly where it crosses into public land, plus you can then zoom & browse around the public land looking for potential campsite clearings. I love it and for only $2.99 I think it’s a deal. No affiliation by the way.
- Back To Boondocking Basics – 8 Steps To Get You Into The Wild
- Planning RV Travels Part III – Maps, Resources & Links
We’ve also made a purchase from our “Big 5 Wishlist” that I wrote at the end of last year, but that announcement must wait for a little while. We’re in deep testing phase & will do a full review soon.
That about wraps up the random updates and, appropriately enough, also our time in Nevada. We’ve only got a few more days left here at Washoe so next time you hear from me we’ll likely be in a new state. At least those are the current “jello” plans. See you there!