Week 7 of Amazon, and surprise, our penultimate!

While the rest of the Amazon Camperforce folks were getting ready to head out close to Christmas, JJ and I were mentally gearing up for another 5 weeks of work. We were repeatedly informed that our extension request had gone through, and that we could work for up to 4 more months, as long as we notified the company at least one week before we intended to leave.  We were going to play things by ear, (or rather, by bank account), and work just long enough to save the funds for 4 months off.

Yes, this is foreshadowing.

This past Friday, our Monday, our HR rep visited us at lunch with some bad news: none of the Campers would be allowed to extend and we would only be working through the 21st.  We had some conflicting feelings about the situation.  On one hand, warehouse work is not my cup of tea, and I won’t be sad to be out of the loud, chaotic environment.  However, we were specifically working to have enough money to be off until our summer job starts in May.  Now what?!

I told JJ that we were taking an emergency afternoon off and we started discussing plans.  We had a couple competing factors.  We wanted to get home to Ohio, and we’re never going to be closer, and Texas, due to a the complicating factors that arise from joining the union as a Republic, has no federally owned land where we can stay for free.  We need a plan that we could enact right away.

So, here’s the result of our planning session, or rather, where I cried a lot, and then JJ talked some sense into me and we got to work.

After Amazon, we will head to an RV park about 300 miles south of here, in Livingston, TX, which is part of our RV membership club.   The park allows dry-camping (that is, without hookups) for just $5 a day, and we will have access to the wonderful facilities there, like showers, a library, and an exercise room.  We need to take a few days to fix a roof leak (and by “we” I mean JJ) and then we can put the RV in storage there for just $30 for a month.  (And for my non-RV readers, let me tell you…this is an amazing bargain!  Normally, RV parks are more like $30/day, and storage is at least $100/month!)

Next, we drive to Ohio in 2 days, between whatever winter storms are coming.  With the cat. Oy vey. But then here’s the fun part: we visit family, friends, taco trucks, and our beloved Columbus, OH ice cream institutions.  So, Ohio peeps, we are coming home!  And we can’t wait to see so many folks we’ve been away from so long.  We will be in town for a couple weeks, so we should have time to do everything we want to do.

And as for the money issue in all this, I’m looking at this as a chance to practice all the virtues that I’ve been talking about on the blog: frugality, valuing experiences over things, flexibility, and an adventurous spirit.  We are far from destitute, and I can either freak out, or embrace the opportunity to be off work for far longer than any vacation I ever could have taken in my past life.

This change of events also means that I will have more exciting content for the blog again, and pictures!

It’s also nice to feel excited for what’s up, rather than beat down by the prospect of more work that does nothing for my soul.  And what’s up this winter?  Probably New Mexico, which offers an awesome deal for camping in their state parks.  For $225, we get a pass that is good for dry camping for a whole year.  New Mexico is covered in state parks, close to the hiking and adverturing we’d like to do.  My inner planner is coming alive again, ready to find the next amazing experience.

Just 4 more days of work, and we’re off!

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6 thoughts on “Week 7 of Amazon, and surprise, our penultimate!

  1. Hi folks,
    Thanks for the blog posts. I really enjoy reading about your adventures. Isn’t it interesting how in life these monetary challenges appear and go and somehow we manage through it all. Would you share what RV membership club you are in please? Do you like it and feel like you get your moneys worth? Jerry and I bought a used camping trailer shortly after our trip to Rock Creek. (where we met you both) We have fixed it up a bit and have used it locally. We have bigger plans to go much farther with it. We are greenhorns at RVing but have camped for years. Merry Christmas! Have a wonderful time with your family and friends.

    Theresa

    • Hello there! How good to hear from you! It’s so exciting to hear that you are moving towards doing more of what you want to do in life. Good for you!

      We are members of Escapees (www.escapees.com), which primarily describes itself as a support network for all RVers. The annual fee is $40, and with it, you have access to so many great benefits. Just the club website is full of RVing info, but that $40 gets you access to a million other things. The 19 campgrounds around the country offer wonderful, inexpensive places to stay. We use them for overnight or weekly stays, but they also have lots for sale for folks who are ready to settle down in one place. The park we’ll stay at in Livingston offers “Smartweigh”, a comprehensive weighing program to ensure your RV is not unbalanced or overweight. There’s even a retirement center at that park, where folks can get assisted living help while remaining in their own RV.

      There’s lots of perks for full-timers, like mail-forwarding services, domicile establishment, and job boards to connect with seasonal employers. And the club hosts all kinds of get-togethers, ranging from local chapters that meet for lunch, to regional rallies, to the national rally that’s held every year and features seminars, education, and entertainment.

      It’s not a camping club like the kind where you pay $1000 and then get to camp for “free” anytime you want…those are a whole other deal, and one that I know nothing about. But, I feel like every RVer should join Escapees, because it’s just so darn useful. The best part is that everyone is so friendly…we love any kind of Escapee gathering, because we know we will make some friends!

      Merry Christmas to you, too, and keep up posted about your adventures!

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