• Mrs. Nomad

A Post-Retirement Shakedown Trip

Not even two weeks into our first trip, and I must confess that the days are already starting to run together. I had great plans to write in my travel journal each day, but I don’t think I was consistent for even a week. So, please forgive me if this is a little jumbled.

I suspect that the days on this short trip will be quite different from the days in our future Alaska to Argentina travel. We have some time constraints this time, and also some visits planned with friends and family. Therefore, we have been in the truck for more hours-per-day than I hope to be while traveling in Mexico and beyond. We have also been in people’s homes more than I expect to be in the future. As a result, we have only spent about half of our nights in the camper so far. But, we have found some awesome boondock spots in which to camp.

The sunrises and sunsets have been amazing. We also had a couple of stormy nights; one with a bunch of thunder and lightning, and another with ridiculous winds of 20–40 miles per hour . . . all night long. It was brutal! On top of the wind, I don’t think it got below 80 degrees that night. Needless to say, we didn’t get much sleep. First thing the next morning we were “out of there”.

While spending a few days taking care of business in Rapid City South Dakota (look for a future post about this), we spent one afternoon in the pool at a campground, another afternoon cooling off in a lake . . . ahhhh, so nice and refreshing. On a recommendation from our SD mailbox service we spent an afternoon at a really nice laundromat with free wi-fi and a table on which to make our lunch while our clothes orbited around.

I have a love/hate relationship with the mosquitos. They really love me, and I really hate them! Not sure what to do about that. One night a raccoon scared the crap out of us, rustling through our trash but sounding like a person roaming about our campsite. Dennis went out twice to see what the heck it was. Luckily it wasn’t the cougar we’d heard about via comments in the iOverland app we’ve been using to locate camp spots.

One morning we had a herd of sheep wander through our camp spot, complete with sheep dogs and a shepherd on horseback. And of course, we saw bison, pronghorn antelope, burros and prairie dogs as we traveled through Yellowstone National Park and Custer State Park in South Dakota.

All in all, our travels have been great. So, the early verdict is that we will be able to do this full-time. And we still like each other. Retirement was a great idea!!! We highly recommend it.