Packing up and hitting the road has always made me giddy with anticipation. This time, not so much. But I accept it. We are rolling down I-5 during uncertain RVing times.
As Jim shared last week, we wrapped up our Camp Covid stay with my birthday party: an insanely long (to us!) but challenging ultra marathon. I ran my age, 51 kilometers and then some.
It was long, sometimes grueling, but oh so satisfying. The riverside route was the same one we chose for our Loneliest Marathon in May, but longer and with more elevation gain. We looked at other routes but in these crazy times we opted for predictability. Safe, but comforting.
Will I do a 52k run next year? Or a 53k run the year after that? Of course! Being in better shape now than when I was half my age, has boosted my confidence about what I can do with my body.
These crazy runs and all the training that goes into it makes me feel good knowing that we are both doing our absolute best to ensure that our later years will be as healthy as they can possibly be.
Jim and I don’t have kids to look out for us in old age. This is kind of like our own version of health insurance. I accepted the responsibility of caring for my health into old age from the day I told him kids were out of the question.
So now here we are, on the road during uncertain RVing times. And we’re doing it during an historic heatwave, killer pandemic, firenadoes, and an outbreak of the plague in South Lake Tahoe. Is Mother Nature pissed or what?!
I didn’t like that we had to leave this beautiful zone of serenity in a time of insanity, but we would have needed to, eventually. We packed up on a dime and it feels good knowing that we still have the heart of gypsies. Our nomadic instincts kicked in as we washed the rig, de-cluttered and made preparations to get moving.
The reason why we are traveling is simple, and as much as I don’t want to be out here on the road (now that’s a sentence I never thought I would write), I accept it. And I also understand that once we get to L.A., things are going to be different, at least temporarily. We are parking the RV curbside in front of my parents’ home, something we never swore we would do again. But there were no better options, so we will stay in their home until the savage Salton Sea heatwave breaks and we can check into Fountain of Youth earlier than usual, probably in mid-October.
In Los Angeles, we will be faced with mental and physical challenges. But that’s nothing new in this lifestyle. There will be no more pre-dawn running routine, afternoon workdays or strolling around Camp Covid and watching the baby quails grow up. The nightly chorus of chirping crickets and croaking frogs will be replaced by the din of speeding cars and screeching sirens. It’s nothing new, I already know this, so why fight it?
This will be a temporary change, but we’re ready for it. And we’re grateful that we have the flexibility to even be there in the first place. Fourteen years of living nomadically with four years of daily mindfulness training has taught me to break the habit of labeling things “bad” or “good.” A situation is simply that – a situation. And it’s always the boss.
Labels add a level of resistance that only serve to make tough situations more challenging than they already are. After all, what we resist, persists.
When it comes to dying, resistance is futile. I accept this is the reason we are rolling now. I can’t change the fact that my dad is getting ready to turn in his greasy mechanics coveralls for a set of angel wings. Death is a natural consequence of life, and as Jim Morrison said, nobody here gets out alive. It’s my pop’s time to fly soon, and if I can be there to help him transition over with some amount of ease and grace, then our stay in the City of Angels will be worth the temporary insanity of an urban jungle.
For now, we’re carefully rolling our way down south and navigating an entirely new world of RVing in uncertain, crazy times. Based on what we saw last night at the packed Mount Shasta KOA, to most people, it’s not all that different than before.