Thursday, November 13, 2014

11/8 Routines

I’ve been driving almost every day, working my way to the panhandle of Florida, so not much sightseeing, and thus not much posting.  However, as I have been driving, I have been thinking about my routines.

Routines are important when you live in an RV because they help you to not forget things.  I have a lot more routines than I ever did when I lived in a regular house. (RV people call them "sticks and bricks.") One thing about motorhomes is that you are taking all of your belongings with you in a vehicle that bounces, bumps, and sways because of the unevenness of roads and even parking lots.  Stuff can break if it is not packed up properly in drawers and cupboards with latches that stay shut.  I have extension rods in my refrigerator to keep things on shelves, for example, and lots of plastic bins in cabinets. 
A big problem that I had when I first started out was leaving drawers or doors (shower door, mostly) unlatched when I leave in the morning or leaving stuff on shelves or my dinette table.  This results in large bangs and crashes as I drive.  I can’t turn around to see what has fallen or slammed, but it usually means I will have to pull over and go back to see what is not latched.  To prevent this, I have a routine of packing up and putting away before I go to bed if I am going to travel the next day.  
Visualize driving up over the typical incline into a parking lot at an angle. Because it is a high vehicle, even the refrigerator swings around.  If the incline is too steep into or out of a parking lot, I will take another exit because the rear end of my vehicle will scape and make a horrible noise.  Ever notice all those marks in the asphalt?  Well, I made some of them.
In addition, it is a lot easier to leave things behind if you are not careful.  I know this because I have lost two adjustable pliers because I have put them temporarily on the top of electrical boxes while I was unhooking!  (I have to use pliers to tighten my water hose so they don’t spray or leak because I don't have enough hand strength.)  On the other hand, I have found pliers, water hose clamps, and other tools in the same places although I have not taken them with me.  Need a really big lost and found place for RVers somewhere.  

In addition, it is EXTREMELY easy to put things in a safe place and then never remember where you put them in a motorhome.  I have 8 underneath (basement) storage bins, two of which have pass throughs that join them to other bins.  Inside, I have storage under my bed, over my bed in cabinets, a big dresser with 6 drawers, and two long multi-door cabinets in my living room. It is like having a large purse with too many compartments.  I also have 4 kitchen drawers, two bigger kitchen drawers, and several overhead cabinets that contain cooking and eating things.  You can understand why I am still missing a vacuum cleaner tool from a year ago.  Also, more recently, I am missing a hose shutoff and a garden sprayer I use to turn the water on and off when I fill my fresh water tank so I don’t waste water or get wet. 
So routines are important to make sure you don't misplace or forget things. I always lock my shower door after I shower, even if I am not going anywhere. That means I am always sure it is locked, and I don't have to check it.  I also make sure I put things back where I got them right away.  As they say, everything has a place, and I try to put things in their places.
Also, the night before I know I will be driving, I put stuff away before I go to bed. This includes folding up my big front TV and making sure all drawers are latched and locked.  Then, in the morning, all I have to do is get up, grab a quick bagel or breakfast sandwich, unhook, put my slides in, and be on my way!!   


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