dish it up

August 5 - the learn as you go plan

Home again, for the moment, for the night. Two nights even. We left the ease of Bruce's driveway this morning, heading south on Highway 1, hoping to luck into a nice spot on the beach we could stay in for several days. I need time to get some work done. Our third stop was at the KOA in Moss Landing, where there was no room, but the managers there, Dyann and Ken, were so nice and accommodating, they spent most of an hour making calls for us until they found us a place for two nights, just north of Pismo. Listening to them talk up the little town of Moss Landing made us wish we could stay, and when we head back that way sometime, we'll be sure to make a reservation ahead of time.

We arrived here at Reynold's Ocean Canyon Resort early enough to enjoy the last of the afternoon and evening, but I felt the need to do a little re-nesting first. We've learned a few things since we left Taos just over a month ago, and have listened to some good advice from people along the way. There's no way of knowing how to do everything at the start of something like this. We have to slog through it and figure things out as we go. Just like the rest of my life, I'm on the learn-as-you-go plan.

We've figured out how to level this "rig" relatively easily and quickly, and Robin, who owns Classic Adventures RV Rentals in Reno, gave us some great tips. Gotta listen to a seasoned pro, especially when she's part of the family. We'd been turning the refrigerator off when we drove, because we'd read that it was safer. The problem on a long drive day was that our food got warm. Being near-vegetarians, we don't have meat in there that could become a health hazard, but it took three days to track down the source of that funky overripe brie smell. Now we leave the fridge on, and when we park for the night, the beer's cold and the cheese smells oh so nice.

My other big domestic issue was the dishes. I wanted to have "real" dishes and glasses, so we'd feel more at home and less like camping. What I didn't consider was that all that pretty Fiestaware, and the glasses and tumblers, would have to be bundled up for safe transport every time we rolled. Way too much effort for the pay-off.

So today we stopped off at Target and bought some inexpensive red plastic dishes that actually look kind of like faux Fiestaware, and some nice crystal clear poly-something wine and water glasses. Then, at Robin's suggestion, we picked up a small dish drainer that fits nicely in the cupboard. The clean dishes live in there, where they're easy to reach and don't need any special treatment on drive days. I'm ridiculously happy with these silly dishes, and have already packed up the fancy ones to stash in the shed in Taos in a couple of weeks when we're back for a quick visit.

The last thing we changed today was the lamp. I knew it was nuts to bring along a handmade stained glass table lamp, but it looks so darn good in here, and I love it so. But I could see that taking the shade off and messing with the bead fringe every time we move was going to take its toll, so now the lamp is in a box for storage too, and it's replaced with a practical black extendo-desk lamp, like the animated one at the start of Pixar films. It's a double-duty lamp to boot, good for reading in the "living room", and equally useful for the added light I need when I make beads and jewelry.

As we get ready to explore our next new neighborhood, I feel simultaneously dumb and brilliant. Dumb for bringing such impractical things along, and brilliant for figuring out what to do about it. I thought when we left Taos that we'd already whittled our stuff down to the bare necessities. Seems our needs are simpler still than we'd imagined. Too much stuff, and the wrong stuff, can be such a drain of energy and such a waste of time. Our lovely things will wait for us in storage. When we need them again, we'll give them a place they can sit still and be beautiful. Until then, the less stuff, the more freedom. Time to go find the beach!


  1. RV'ing is definitely a learn-as-you-go process...been there done that lol. You'll be surprised when you compare you first month with your 5th, or 10th, how much things have changed and you have adapted.

    Enjoy Pismo beach and all the clams you can eat (so sayeth Bugs Bunny :))

    Penny \IiiI

  2. Have you ever heard a song by Delbert McClinton called "Too Much Stuff"?..."It's way too much, you'll never ever get enough. You can pile it high and you'll never be satisfied." Says a lot about our society, and how we got into the trouble we're in now.

    Have fun with your continuing downsizing. Sounds like you've got it under control!


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