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Stuck on the Interstate in my RV

AAA has lost my business forever. I don’t know what kind of crap they pulled with me, but when I was stranded on the Interstate on a Sunday afternoon with transmission fluid spewing out of my RV, they abandoned me.  That is unforgiveable.

On February 27, the day I bought Tilly (Click here to learn about her name), I signed up for AAA’s premier roadside assistance- I KNEW, with an older RV, I would need it!  I signed up online and within a couple of weeks my shiny new card arrived in the mail.  In April, I got stuck in a tight spot and called them.  The AAA tow truck came and pulled me out. I paid nothing – everything was covered. No problem.

Fast forward to last month. I’m sitting on the shoulder of I-5, 115 miles outside of San Francisco, with white smoke and transmission fluid spewing from poor Tilly. It was the day after the awning blew off in a terrible storm in Weed and, as you can expect, I’m at my wits’ end. “Here we go again,” I tell myself… the RV-Lemon saga continues… “Don’t panic, that’s what AAA Roadside Assistance is for! It will be alright. Everything will be fine.”

WRONG! Because, remember, the universe freaking hates me!

broken rv awning wind california
Broken awning on my RV – Windstorm

The operator tells me, “Ms. Higgins, your account says it’s valid until February 27, 2017, but it shows that it’s inactive. I’m not sure why that is. Would you mind holding while I contact member services?”

Great, now what?  “Yes, of course. Thank you,” I reply curtly, trying not to panic.

Tick-tock, tick-tock, tick-tock…

After what seemed like a million tick-tocks, the operator comes back. “Ms. Higgins. It seems your account is inactive because of an issue with our payment.”

WAIT. What??? “An issue with my payment? What kind of issue with my payment?” Ok, losing my cool here…

“I don’t know ma’am; I’d be happy to transfer you to member services if you like.”

You have got to be kidding me. I was gritting my teeth and clutching the phone to my ear, trying like hell to not dump all the frustration of the past couple of days onto her, “O. Kay.” Deep breath, slowly, deliberately, in a terse and very measured voice, “If. There. Was. A. Problem. With. My. Payment… then how… was I able… to get service… TWO MONTHS later-in April???”

Truth be told, I’d gone through this with them in Joseph, Oregon when my starter died, but I got off the phone before it was resolved, because I walked to the mechanic quicker than they could figure out the problem. I was kicking myself; I never called them back.  I just never got around to it. I figured it had to be a glitch in their system. How could I not be covered? I had a card.  I had service two months after I signed up.  They have my email address and phone number; they never communicated that there might be a “problem with my payment”! How can that happen?!?

“I’m not sure ma’am. That shouldn’t have happened. I’d be happy to transfer you to member services and they can explain.” The operator seemed to forget that I was on the side of a busy Interstate on a Sunday afternoon, with big rigs jolting me as they zoomed past, and red fluid flowing like a river of blood from underneath my rig… She seemed to forget, I was not in the mood for corporate shenanigans.

Trying extremely hard not to scream expletives at her (we both know I can swear like a sailor) and reminding myself, “you get more bees with honey than vinegar. Be nice and maybe she’ll feel sorry for you and send a big blue and yellow truck to come to your rescue.”  Slowly, and using every ounce of self-control I spat,  “IF. For whatever reason. there WAS a problem with my payment – though I don’t know how, since I used the service two months later AND you never notified me of a problem – and I pay today, can you tow me?”

“No ma’am there’s a 48-hour waiting period.”

Of course, there is!

“I’m very sorry ma’am.” She didn’t sound nearly sorry enough and I was barely able to get off the phone without completely going off on her.

This is no time to feel sorry for yourself. Get yourself together. 

Finding a Tow for a Class C RV Isn’t Easy! 

I googled tow trucks.  The first two places I called were too busy to come and get me. Really. Too busy to even TRY to help me…

The third would have cost me $600 (I was trying to get towed 60 miles to where my car was stored). But he told me to call Sander’s Heavy Towing, out of Williams – the town closest to me.  Sander’s wasn’t too busy to send a truck and it would only cost $175.

Within an hour I was sitting in the passenger seat of the big white tow truck with Capone on my lap, pulling into the yard of Harper’s Auto Repair in Williams CA.  The owner, Dave just happened to be there and he and the Tow Truck Driver (forgot his name, let’s call him TTD) greeted each other like old friends.    After explaining that my transmission busted, TTD and Dave laughed and joked about fun stuff while I impatiently brooded over my shitty luck.  Dave said I could stay in the yard, behind their locked gate (which he’d leave unlocked so I wouldn’t be trapped inside).

TTD backed me into a spot in the cluttered yard, and before leaving, gave me his cell number in case I needed a ride to town. The tiny center of Williams was about two miles away- and it’s not much of town.  With a population of 5,123, its claim-to -fame is being an Interstate rest-stop with half a dozen authentic Mexican restaurants (there’s a heavy farm-worker population), a tourist trap hotel and restaurant called Ganzella’s, a couple local hotels with names like Stage Stop Inn, and your usual Interstate fare: fast food, convenience store gas stations, a Motel 6, a Ramada and a Traveler’s Inn.

Breaking Down and Living at a Garage in an RV

TDD pulled away, Dave left and dummy-locked the gate and there I was, behind a cyclone fence in a gravel lot that smelled like old grease, in Bumfuck California; 60 miles from my car and my California “home” base. For neighbors, I had train storage containers, old cars that didn’t run anymore – and several that probably did – old campers and industrial-looking ‘stuff’ strewn about.

Ok, this is part of the adventure! I’ll make the most of it.  Look at me getting through my first breakdown and sleeping at an auto repair shop! I tried to console myself: “I knew this day would come, and here I am… dealing with it!”  Look at me making lemons outta lemonade! Kum-fucking-baya!

I ate dinner and then Capone and I walked around the acre-sized yard, noticing a full bright moon and an eerily cloudy, moonlit night.  I got out my camera: at least I can practice my nighttime photography.

Stranded at auto repair shop on an RV - cloudy moonlit sky
Gorgeous first night of my RV Breakdwon

Monday morning: I was anxiously peeking out my RV window at 7:45, waiting for them to open shop at 8am.   I gave them exactly 7 minutes to get settled before walking into the shop and introducing myself to the first guy I saw, who happened to be the service manager, Brent. He was expecting me; Dave had already called him. Brent said he didn’t want to wake me, so was going to give me a few more minutes before knocking on the door. I appreciated that, but I’d been up for two hours. Let’s get going…Fix the rig so I can get back on the road! My anxiety was working in overdrive, unlike my transmission.

While Brent got all my info, a mechanic grabbed my keys and hopped in to drive Tilly onto their one-and-only heavy-duty rack.  She wouldn’t budge. They filled the empty transmission with fluid. Still, she refused to budge.  The transmission was locked up. I killed it.  (Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you the part where I tried to save $175 and drive the 5 miles to Williams.  I made it about a mile before the big old rig just wouldn’t go anymore… so back to the side of the Interstate we went, calling Sander’s Tow back, admitting defeat: “Yeah, I didn’t make it. I’ll need you to come and get me after all.”)

They pushed and pulled Tilly onto the rack and started poking away. The transmission pump was “shattered” Brent said. That’s what caused the whole mess and the transmission to lock up; something about air and fluid and seizing parts. His lengthy explanation went in one ear and out the other: just tell me how much it will cost, how long it will take and when I can get on with my life!

When I asked Brent if I killed it by trying to drive to Williams, I never got a conclusive ‘yes’ or ‘no’.   Or at least I didn’t hear a conclusive ‘yes’. So, I’m going with, ‘no’. “You need a new transmission – if we can even find one for that truck,” Brent confirmed my biggest fear, but what my gut already knew. I’d known the transmission would need to be replaced – eventually. It didn’t have a low gear, and it slipped a couple times… I just hoped “eventually” would be a year or two down the road.

Oh, lord, here we go again. “What do you mean IF we can find one???”

“Well, I don’t know that we can get one for a truck that old.  Or how close we can find one,” Brent replied.

A million terrifying thoughts went through my mind in a split second. What if they can’t find a transmission? What if it can’t be fixed? What if Tilly is broken for good? Where will I live? Will I be able to sell her? Could I live in my car? Oh NO. What will I do? Dear Universe: whatever I did in a past life to make you insist on shitting on me in this one. I’M SORRY!!! OK???. Really, I mean it!  UNCLE!!!!

Brent said he would get to work right away to find a transmission, “Don’t worry. I’ll do my best.” Somehow hearing “don’t worry” from of a man I’d just met an hour before, calmed me a little. I plopped down in one of the stiff cold lawn chairs in their very garage-like waiting room with concrete floors, an Arrowhead water dispenser with a stack of red keg-beer cups next to it and a table cluttered with coloring books and crayons, The Bible, a copy of the Constitution and Guns & Ammo magazines – for the adults I presumed.  They graciously gave me their Wi-Fi password and I got to work while I waited for news from Brent.

Within a few hours Brent came back with the news. He found solutions! A brand-new transmission shipped in from the east coast, $4700; a rebuilt transmission done out of Sacramento (50 miles away), $3700 – with a nationwide Napa service warranty.  A thousand dollars is a thousand dollars. I went with the rebuild. “Three days,” Brent told me, “to pull it, send it to “the guy” and re-install it. We should have you back on the road by Thursday” he said.

Well there goes the money I was going to save as my emergency fund from the sale of my car. But at least I had the money and theoretically, I could be back on the road in a few days! (I know how these things go, I wasn’t holding my breath!)  I’ll believe it when I feel the rumble of the road under my butt and smell my black tank wafting in the breeze!

I wasn’t about to sit around the garage for 3 days, so I set out to get my car.  There is no UBER in BF California, so I texted TTD and asked if he would give me a ride. “Sure, I have the day off and nothing to do. How about if you just fill up my tank and I’d be happy to drive you?”

“Awesome!” And within an hour he came to pick me up. The car was a Mercedes that could only take premium and apparently, his monster-sized tank was bone dry; my good-Samaritan ride cost me $57.  Beggars can’t be choosers: I was grateful for the ride.


A couple hours later I returned to the shop in my car.  Tilly was still on the rack, still in the process of pulling the transmission. Apparently, my RV is like the heaviest truck or RV ever – they had a hell of a time pushing/pulling it onto the rack – so there was no way they were taking it off.  No yard camping for me tonight – I get to sleep IN the garage! Woo-hoo another adventure. Just Capone and me and the smell of old oil, exhaust and grease! Look at me living the dream!  

My circumstances weren’t ideal, but I went to sleep that night, in the eerie creaky garage, full with gratitude. The kindness that two strangers had shown me that day; Dave letting me – a stranger – stay in his garage and TTD taking 2 hours out of his day to drive me to my car, gave me solace and even a little happiness. Kind people make me happy!

Getting a New (Rebuilt) Transmission for My RV

Tuesday morning: I was mobile and had no desire to sit around the garage for 3 days.  I drove 115 miles to San Francisco to visit one of my oldest and dearest friends.  I lived in San Francisco when I first moved to California 28 years ago and fall in love with The City all over again, every time I cross the Bay Bridge. Spending 3 days “living” there again; walking the hilly city streets, breathing in the foggy sea air, basking in views of the Bay, drinking rich, smooth espresso, eating mouth-watering vegan Indian, Mexican and Mediterranean food, all within a few blocks of her flat, and catching up with my friend almost made all my RV troubles fade away.

Friday afternoon: Of course, the transmission didn’t get rebuilt on time. So, they pushed the “on the road” date to Friday.  I reluctantly left my friend and the city I love, Friday at 12:30 for my long drive back to the garage – and my Rig!!!  Four and a half hours later (thanks to Bay Area Friday traffic), just as I exited I-5, a few miles from the shop, my phone rang.  It was Brett.  The new transmission wasn’t working. Of course, it’s not.  I wasn’t even surprised.  Welcome to my life.

It was installed, but on the test drive, it wouldn’t automatically shift into gear and it started in 3rd (or something like that).  And of course, they waited until 10 minutes before I was due back to tell me this. If I’d known earlier, I would have stayed in The City, but I wasn’t about to turn around and drive back.

It was Friday. Another 3 nights in the yard (they moved me outside!). At least I had power, WI-FI and my car.

Colusa Water towers
Colusa County water towers near shop

STRANDED in a Broken Down RV: Week #2.

Monday and Tuesday:  testing and troubleshooting.  Their testers were kicking back codes that didn’t make sense. They called the transmission guy and another Ford transmission expert to help.  “It needs a new PCM (the transmission’s computer),” Dave tells me. They order a new PCM

Wednesday: I couldn’t take it anymore. I was about to explode. I felt anxious. Angry. Trapped.   I wanted my home back. I wanted to get back on the road!  I wanted open space and peace and quiet.

I drove 40 miles to escape in a movie (The Accountant – a disappointment: too violent). It was too hot to leave Capone in the car, so I leashed him up and walked up to the popcorn counter to buy my ticket, like he belonged there!  The mood I was in, I mentally dared anyone to challenge that I needed him to keep me sane. And they must have sensed it, because even as he pulled on the leash to grab every piece of popcorn that fell to the floor from my overflowing bucket, the staff just stood by and said nothing.

I returned to the shop at 4:00 hoping for good news. I didn’t get it. The PCM solved one problem, but it still wouldn’t shift right. Dave said the guy who did the rebuild needed to tow my rig to his place in Rancho Cordova, 70 miles away!  I was about to cry. Really. How much can a person handle? I try to be optimistic but then this shit happens, time and time again, it can be hard to not feel like the universe hates me. HOW can this keep happening?

“B…b..but. Where will I live?” Dave offered up his 5th Wheel that was parked in back, until my RV was running again. “Rancho Cordova isn’t safe,” he said, “and the guy won’t let you stay in his garage.”

Ohmyfucknggod! Oh, ok, Universe, so I’m just supposed to forgive and forget you shitting all over me because this man, who doesn’t know me from Adam is being so helpful and kind??  Well it won’t work; It’s not enough!

“But before we do that, I’m going through it with a fine-tooth comb. I want to make sure we didn’t miss something, before I send it back to him. Because if he finds the problem, you’ll have to start all over and he’ll treat you like a new customer and it could cost you a lot more.” He and his mechanic were there until 9 that night working on it, while I worked inside. That’s the night the monster-sized spider came to visit me.


I heard happy “YES’s” coming from under my hood.  I ran out to see what they were celebrating. They found the problem!!! Oh, praise the universe! I will be free, free at last… Not quite, I was cautiously optimistic…

They said they needed one more part and one more day and I should be ready to go.  “We’ll see.”, I thought.

Thursday. Waiting for a part…. I was out of water. My black tank was getting full. I needed a shower. I went to a hotel.

Friday.  SUCCESS!!! The tranny was shifting on her own!!! By 1:00 they were done! Dave took me for a test drive to teach me what to listen for in case the transmission acts up again. I noticed the difference immediately – so THIS is how my transmission is supposed to sound? A gentle purrrr, not a rough high-pitched ‘whir’.  The RV has always run rough and loud, so I never noticed it was revving high on the freeway (I don’t have an RPM gage).

The problem? What caused this whole mess? A blown fuse.  Yep – a freaking FUSE.

Since early in the summer the fuse for my radio, speedometer and odometer kept blowing.  I’d keep changing it out. I even had the bright idea to replace the 15-amp fuse with a 20-amp – my thinking was, more amperage would mean less blowing! (I now know how dangerous that is.)

So, I changed the fuse four or five times, until it wouldn’t take one anymore; it would spark and blow out before I even got it all the way in.  So, without a working speedometer, there was no signal to the CPM telling it was time to shift gears. Apparently, since the fuse blew, I’d been driving without a 4th or 5th gear. All my freeway driving: 3rd gear. THAT’S what broke my transmission. THAT’s why my engine always felt super-hot under my legs even on cool days. THAT’s why it seemed loud and sluggish, even after putting in a new catalytic converter.

It was a goddamn fuse.

But at last my transmission was repaired (and while it was there I had an oil change, tune up, new U-Joints and new engine mounts: no more high revving, clunking or clinking!) Two weeks, and $5400 later, I was driving out of the yard!

I decided to stick around through the weekend to drive the hell out of it to make sure nothing broke again. I wanted to stay close to the shop that did the work and knew the history- rather than head to Nevada and risk breaking down in the middle of the desert and having to start all over again.

Sacramento River view from colusa Campground
Sacramento River – my first camp after RV was fixed

I went back on Monday for one more test drive with them- everything was working great!

But I couldn’t leave just yet – I was still waiting on client invoices that were now 2 weeks past due… (nothing was going my way that month!)

It was another week before I could be set free of the Bay Area.  Three weeks of stress, hustle and bustle, traffic, crowds, and sensory overload. It took me about a week of decompressing alone in the national forest to start feeling ‘normal’ again. It’s been two weeks since I left, the RV is running great and I’m finally feeling free again.

When you Live in an RV  Repairs and Maintenance are Critical!

THE MORAL OF THIS RV LIVING STORY: DO sweat the small stuff! If I had had the fuse checked out right away, maybe I could have prevented all of this! Sure, it may have cost a few hundred dollars to tear apart the dash and find the problem, but that would have been nothing compared to the THOUSANDS and WEEKS I spent getting a new transmission.

When we live in a mobile home, we can’t take anything for granted. I learned that I have to take better care of Tilly and not ignore the little things. This isn’t just a car- this is my home!


47 Responses

  1. Those fuses will get you every time. My RV van has a 350 engine and one day I hopped out of my van to get a coffee and came back and I couldn’t shift the van out of park. I was on a trip and on my way home. Luckily a nice mechanic helped me out for $50.00 and I found out that it was a fuse that had blown and further found out that I have to put my van in park with my handbrake and then shift to park because if I don’t and just shift to park first it puts pressure on my solenoid and blows the fuse. I carry a fuse set with me now, just in case.

    1. Lynn, OH no! Glad you were able to find a solution to your fuse problem quickly! It’s always good to have extras on hand. Thank you for your comment!- Carolyn

  2. Wow, Carolyn, What fortitude! I just found you on YouTube. I have a somewhat newer 350 Ford camper van (Pleasureway 2011). I wanted to chew off my own arm imagining what it was like for you. The learning curve is steep and expensive.
    I’ve had my van a year and a half, and one dang thing after another sucks out chunks of my bank account. Thank you for sharing your story. Who would’ve thought a little fuse was a key to this whole expensive mess. Most of my problems have been things like leaking fresh water tank, requiring a replacement, fridge, little electrical things, generator issues. I’ve been planning on launching full time in about a year and am venturing out for frequent shorter trips until then. I always seem to return with a new issue and, admittedly at times, I imagine returning to car camping. I will be watching for your videos and blog posts. Thank you for sharing your experiences!

    1. Amber, Oh no, reading your post is making me nervous about all the things that could still go wrong!!! lol. I’m sorry you’ve had to go through all that – yeah, I knew I’d have to deal with repairs and breakdowns- I read that a lot when researching – but you never know how tough it’ll be until you’re in the middle of it! I hope your problems start to diminish and you can find peace in your travels. And good luck on your journey to going f/t! How exciting!!!

      Thank you very much for watching, reading, and especially taking the time to write and share your experiences with me. Happy Thanksgiving! – Carolyn

  3. Oh my god , what a story. Basically it was a lack of maintenance. You drove all that time in 3rd gear and did not no anything was wrong? That engine was just a screaming to be looked at. Maintenance is key for a long vehicle life. change your oil every 5000 miles check your transmission oil once in a while. Make sure not a speck of dirt gets onto the dipstick and into the trans it can be trouble. check all fluids and don’t wait for your break pads to start eating away at your discs (expensive). When I saw your video I noticed the paint above your cab was missing and starting to get a little rusty. With a little sandpaper and paint you get more time out of your RV.
    I wish you all the best of luck in the world. You deserve it.
    Sorry for my preaching maintenance but I thought it would help you.
    Andre Post

    1. Andre, I’ll forgive the preaching, because I know you are trying to be helpful. I do change my oil and check my fluids regularly. The RV has always run pretty rough, so I thought the high revving was just the rig being her old self. I’ve never driven anything this big, old or heavy before – it’s a big learning curve! I appreciate your concern and advice! Thanks for reading. – Carolyn

  4. Reading your story reminds me of the time that the family RV’s transmission died in Shasta. We were on our way to Boise, ID. Luckily, we had second cousins in McCloud which was nearby. We spent two weeks there while the motor home was being fixed. Spent the 4th of July watching a small town parade and then went to Mt Shasta to play in the snow. Great vacation.

    I’ve driven past Williams many times. When you mentioned Williams, I knew you were in good mechanical hands. I used to live in Vacaville, CA.

    1. Marcey – Sounds like your breakdown experience turned out to be fun! How lucky you had family nearby! Thanks for reading and commenting! – Carolyn

  5. Great “on the road” writing! EExcellent plot for a film short! You will be a star! Find my friend, Bradley Hawkins, a film maker (many awards for this year’s “Rollercoaster”) on Facebook. Your “shower interrupted” too! HAHAHAHA!

    1. Clark, thank you, I appreciate your kind words. Glad you enjoyed the posts and videos! Makes me proud… – Carolyn

  6. I saw a couple of your videos first before looking up your blog. This is the first blog post that I’ve read. You really are a brave woman! I sure enjoyed reading this post and must figure out how to start at the beginning of this journey.
    Take Care!

    1. Barb – the saying goes, “it starts with a single step.” For me that single step is research, which then leads to planning and before I know it, I’ve committed myself. I hope the same is true for you. You’re already researching! That’s a step! Good luck and I hope to see you out here someday! Thanks for following along my adventures! – Carolyn

  7. Hi , do you belong to Escapees?..they offer a “boot camp thing $. IV thought of taking it….might give some peace of mind…nice group. Hope to meet you at the RTR. IM starting out f r om new england after xmas. Should be interesting..lol…chin up! Linda,rusty ,lizzy

    1. Linda – NO, I’m not a member of Escapees. Maybe some day I’ll join, who knows. Good luck in your travels from NE, look forward to meeting at the RTR. Chin is almost always up – doesn’t take long for me to bounce back! 🙂 You do the same, have fun and be safe. – carolyn

  8. I really found your blog and videos to be very informative and helpful. I am seeking to become a full time rver and i needed advice on heating my rv and having running hot water when on board systems don’t work.

    1. Steve, I’m happy to read that you found my videos and blog so helpful. That’s nice to hear. Thank you. Good luck with your full time RV life dream! – Carolyn

  9. I enjoy your writing style and the can do attitude you take to living in a RV. When I was younger I would take trips with my grandparents in a 5th wheel and I can still remember the problems the RV would almost constantly have. I’m glad that you were able to solve yours.

    1. Chris – thank you! Yes, these things do not come maintenance free!! I appreciate you reading and taking the time to write! – C

  10. Just found your youtube today. Enjoying it.
    Re-breakdown and such. Always have a spare fuel pump relay and fuse. Cost less than $40. The Fords are known for this random failure. You are simply driving along and it quits running without any fanfare.
    When you try to restart your vehicle it turns over, sounds good “trying’ to start, but won’t, and you have fuel in the tank, etc. After trying to start, walk back to the exhaust pipe and smell. You should smell raw, un-burned fuel. If you don’t, most likely a blown relay and or fuse. Easy to change them, just learn where they are, usually easily accessible. Shops charge a small fortune for this repair, not to mention the dreaded tow bill, too. I am surprised how much this happens on older vehicles.
    Last thing, the warranty on your rebuilt trans may require you to have a trans filter change at 1000 mi or so to keep warranty in effect.
    Happy miles, and smiles.

    1. Thank you Jerry! Great advice and I am very grateful that you took the time to write to me!! I will look for that fuse (becoming intimate with my fuse boxes lol). I will also check on the warranty on the trans… ty very much. !! Happy holidays!

  11. Carolyn
    Just saw your “cost to live in RV” your income tax at $ 375 a month. Is that state and federal? Most RVrs choose No. Dakota, Texas, or Florida for residence. NO State income tax.
    My last years in Ohio I paid thousands in State and city income tax. Now in Florida, retired, not an RVr yet. Wife is to sick. Love your videos. There are many videos on RVrs and taxes.

    1. CT – Thanks for the advice. I have made a conscious decision to keep my California residency and pay CA income tax. Maybe some day I will change to a state that has no state income tax, but for now, I’ll stick with CA! Thanks very much for the tips, I appreciate you watching and sharing! – Carolyn

  12. Our home base is Vacaville and I just kept wishing we knew you and were able to help you. You really were fortunate to find mechanics that worked that hard and were that accommodating. I know after paying those costs it can be hard to see but your guardian Angel was working hard! I just found your blog and as a bay area person identified with you immediately. We stay at the Vineyard when in Vacaville and will keep our eyes open for you. Good luck and Safe travels!

    1. Beth – that’s so kind of you!! I’ve been at the vineyard!! I stayed there a few times in my first few months when I was still having to be in the Bay Area every few weeks! Thank you for reading and leaving your kind comment! All the best, Carolyn

  13. WOW, So many expensive lessons learned. I was scared for you, and it’s over and done ;). Smart woman for choosing to have the other work done as well! Did the previous owners know that they were selling you a bunch of costly problems, you think?The two guys are the good parts of the universe, I am glad they were there.

    1. Hi GK. I really believe the previous owners didn’t know half of the problems… you know, they drove it twice a year.. lol.
      I’m glad it’s behind me and now I can live without too much worry. (fingers crossed!)
      ty for the message! – C

  14. Hi, I have a comment about your video of taking a shower and someone knocking at your door. There are security cameras you can install around your RV which connect to your phone or computer.
    This way when someone knocks you can see them and with sound speak to them without having to open your door.
    Thanks for the videos and blogs. I have been enjoying them.

  15. “I’ll believe it when I feel the rumble of the road under my butt and smell my black tank wafting in the breeze!”…OMG you are sooo funny! Really you have a forte for humorous honesty and since I just started actually reading your blogs instead of just watching the youtube videos I’ve come to the conclusion that you are a terrific writer, no really. The details, the wit, and even the way you handle all of the problems/situations are so addicting to lose myself in this adventure of yours, I truly can’t stop reading so a book is in order, a real hardcopy book! PLEASES!? I want you to succeed personally and monetarily and you have a gift with the written word, despite all of the hassles of finding cell signals, writing in between all of the mechanical mishaps, dealing with the bad weather and you still manage to recall/remember such detail! What a gift you are to so many people, the talent should be capitalized on! IMHO Laura

    1. Laura, I am so glad you found my website and my RV blog AND that you find it interesting and entertaining…. reading comments like your is a dream come true. For a long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to be a writer.. Life is funny, isn’t it??

      If you haven’t yet, you may want to check out my blog about hiking the John Muir Trail.. it’s more than a trail journal, it’s more about life and what got me there – and THAT is part of what got me to where I am today. I think you would find that fun too: http://aloneonthejmt.com/

      Thank you for taking the time to leave your wonderful comment. I’m honored that you think so highly of my writing. I do plan to write a book, of the JMT journey first and eventually a memoir. Thank you for the encouragement. Take care! – Carolyn

  16. Hi Carolyn,
    I wanted to leave a comment and tell you how very proud of you i am. I am your age and have been following you on you tube. Your awesom.

  17. What a rough experience I’m glad things worked out. I’m glad you mentioned to focus on the small things when it comes to repairs. Proper repair services always come down to the small things.

  18. Thanks for sharing your experience. I have been thinking about getting an RV myself but I never realized all the challenges that someone could face living in one. I guess it is a home on wheels and most homes deal with the same issues. I think I will get an RV after reading this because it actually assured me that living and traveling in one is totally realistic and possible, and you get a great story out of it.

  19. I’ve been wanting to get some good repairs for my rv. I’m glad you talked about how we should choose a good rv repair option for our things. I’m going to have to do some research and see what we can find!

  20. My uncle is planning to go on a long drive this coming weekend but the brakes of his RV was damaged last time he used it. It was explained here that finding a tow for an RV is not that easy. Moreover, it’s recommended to hire professionals for quality RV repair services.

  21. Ok…so I know nothing about this is supposed to be funny however…I can so see you going through this! What a wonderful storyteller you are!!!!!!

  22. I like how you said that we should sweat the small stuff when it comes to RVs, because having things looked at right away can save you a world of trouble. My husband and I want to get an RV so we can start going on long trips with our kids. I hadn’t realized the importance of service and maintenance, so thanks for sharing your story!

  23. I’ll have to start taking a look into small repairs to prevent bigger ones. I have been considering getting an RV to live in for a few months in the summer and I wouldn’t want to have an experience like that. Spending a hundred dollars sounds a lot better than spending thousands on a big repair.

  24. I love your story and how you said the moral of the story is that you should get small things checked and repaired to reduce risks. My husband has an RV he inherited from his parents and wants to fix it up fully before he takes it out on the road. We will keep these tips in mind in our search for a professional.

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