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Post Info TOPIC: No strength


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No strength


Twelve months ago I sold my comfortable but fairly large mortgage home and bought " The  Dream". A beautiful 18'6" caravan and a 200 series Landcruiser. A knee replacement delayed my new life by 12 months ( I could not rent anything for under 12 months). Now the new life WAS to begin. I sent myself up to stay in a caravan park for 6 weeks to familiarise myself with the van and it's workings. Unfortunately a lovely, drive through site I was told I had turned into a site on the end of a thoroughfare where I could not even put up my awning because the 200 was parked where that was meant to go. Where the vehicle was meant to go was extremely dicey re the car not being collected by vans or cars. Sorry, I digress, I met some amazing people whilst I was there BUT, I have discovered that I do not have the strength to carry out all the setting up required. I feel-as-though I would ALWAYS be requiring assistance. Now I am feeling as though I should abandon my dream of a new life style, and just go and rent in a village somewhere. I am not looking for sympathy just would appreciate some reality, without much strength is a life on the road out of my reach? I realise I was looking at my new life from a 40 yrs. old eyes instead of a 70 yrs. old body. Thanks to anyone willing to give me some REALITY!



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Gaye Christie


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Hi Gaisie

The last time I replied to one of your posts, I had not been into a caravan park, for quite a while, for more than an overnight stop, (so was unable to comment on caravan park dwellers attitudes)

During the last few months, I spent some time in a caravan park, in Kalbarri (Western Australia)

I found the people around me, not much different, than people I had met in free/donation/low cost campsites

I, along with every person I had ever met on this forum, would gladly assist someone to set up, or pack up, if we were asked

There is nothing wrong with growing old, and loosing a bit of strength, as it will happen to us all one day

We are all different, but I sincerely hope that everything comes good for you







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Tony

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Thanks Guru. I have been having a difficult time decision making and your reassuring words made me quite emotional, may be I will "give it a go" instead of packing it in before I even start, thanks for your reply



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Gaye Christie


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Hi no strength.

Will be hard only one person with caravan See how you go,KEEP TO THE DREAM.biggrinbiggrin.

You might think of trading to motor home,Depends on your money situation.The body tells you what to do take care blankstareblankstare.roker



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Chief one feather

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"Reality"

Well, in my case, I did a similar thing, well the same actually. I have enjoyed being full time on the road for 8 years now and 3 for 8 out of 12 months Part time. I have seen some great places and met some great people and made great friends, some life long.

Covid hit and like everyone was stranded but luckily in a place I really enjoyed. During that time my health declined a little and pain set in. Now, like you, find it difficult to set up and unpack so have decided to stay put a little longer and see how things pan out. "Reality" is though that pain will possibly worsen.

I would suggest you find a different cvp or site and one you can stay at long term if needed and see how things pan out for you. I still live in my van and love the life and have my awning out with privacy screens all round and use it as another room when weather is not too bad. Even then I tend to still enjoy that 'extra' room. I love the area and locals are starting to get to know me and me them.

I can still move if really need to but would take a few days to pack up instead of a few hours. Getting old has it's disadvantages but some pretty good advantages. I don't have to go to school for one biggrin

I am solo so it only affects me so all good.


Keep Safe on the roads and out there.





-- Edited by Dougwe on Wednesday 17th of August 2022 04:01:12 PM

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Veteran Member

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Hi Tony,GOOD REPLY.

 



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Guru

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You posted a thread on 12/5/22 to which you had some excellent replies but didn't trouble to respond.

I suspect it's not answers you are looking for but rather confirmation of your decisions. All I can say to that is that it's your life... do as you wish.



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My experience was similar to yours in that I realised I'd done my dash to late, not enough money and not enough strength or health to go long term. So I chose simpler, (sleep in the car) smaller (so I can change a tyre) and shorter (trips) then I injured my wrist the first time I put the awning out (now have to tie a tarp to it if alone and can't change a tyre) and now I am struggling to do anything.

This year I'm making my hubby do a trip with me (so he can do the heavy work).

And next year (if/when I've had surgery on my wrist) I plan do do a half lap.

I went from planning on being a full time nomad, to planning to do a big lap, to now hoping to do a half lap, come home then maybe another half lap another year if I can. Whatever happens I'll still be doing smaller road trips.

I got very depressed when I realised I couldn't be a proper nomad, and have my plans keep shrinking. And furious with myself for injuring my wrist so I have an awning I don't use, but in the end I'm still breathing.

I know our situations are very different but don't give up just yet. I'm assuming you would have to sell your rig to pay for a village, and if you do your rig will be a 2nd hand sale anyway, so you might as well give it another go (or 3). Or if you could afford to keep your rig, I've seen many if them parked in retirement villages ready for part time travel.

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Guru

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Hi Gaisie. In my 8 years of travelling I have found the caravanning community the most helpful people I have met. I usually travel alone and any time I have needed assistance with either reversing, an errant awning, flat battery or just a general stuff up, all that is needed is a quick can you give me a hand please mate? and the cavalry arrives. I am a male so you will get a division arriving. Most of us on the journey have a bung leg or back and others enjoy lending a hand. I know when others have asked me I do not hesitate, it is fun and pleasant to know you have given back. Just give it a go. You will be alright with the aid of all the friends you havent met yet.

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Member

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Sorry Tony, I thought you were Guru, thanks for your reply



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Gaye Christie


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I apologise for not replying to any posts. I honestly cannot remember posting anything and then I had difficulties logging in to the forum so abandoned trying, too involved with moving and making decisions. I shall endeavour to maintain contact in the future, once again, I apologise for my negligence



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Gaye Christie


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Thank you everyone for your posts. Everyone has certainly given me hope and will seriously reassess my decision making process. I am not too up-to-date with IT stuff so I apologise if I do not reply/respond appropriately. I TRULY appreciate everyone's comments, it gives me hope that may be, just may be I will be able to give it a go. Thank you, thank you everyone, it certainly reinforces the Grey Nomad community's passion for what they do. 



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Gaye Christie


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I have long ago stopped offering assistance to other caravanners. Being repeatedly told they can back it in even after 20 minutes of the backwards and forwards motions, Being expected to know where their awning equipment is stored and being expected to lift that equipment while they watch and bark indecipherable directions is now something I am not prepared to experience any more.
Like others I have trouble getting up and down when winding stabilisers but with my equipment with my previous van, I had suitable tools to do the job without having to bend too far. The details could be an entire new topic.

From your need to have a drive through and coupled with your inability to do what is required it might be a wise suggestion that maybe caravanning is not for you.

Apart from the inconvenience and difficulty experienced in a caravan park, it is out on the road where inexperience can turn into tragedy in the blink of an eye.
Handling a combination in the vicinity of 6 tonne in weight is not something anyone should be doing when suffering any type of disability or are out there without appropriate training and experience.

I have just recently undergone chemo treatment and subsequent recovery ( hopefully ) from cancer and I know that I am now not as strong as I was prior to the chemical being administered to control the disease.
I actually ( sadly ) sold my van and will not get another one until I prove to myself that I am capable of performing all the tasks skilfully so as not to be an inconvenience a burden or a danger to others.

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Just rolling up a simple awning on the side of a car, pretty much requires 2 people to avoid scratching the car, & that's on a non windy day.

 

In Europe so many caravans have remote control movers which typically clamp on the wheels. My brother in-law installed a mover as he has 2 hip replacements.

 

There are tools for lifting, pushing, turning, rolling at the press of a button.

 

There is a solution for every problem. 



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Thanks for your opinion Ivan. I can really understand your point of view, that was why I posted my issues. Fortunately for me, there are still many travellers out there willing to give a hand, so I am going to give it a go and if I become too much of a burden then I reassess my options and make a decision then.



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Gaye Christie


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When are we there, thank you. I have tried to make it easier on myself but my strength has declined, so even more of a challenge to contend with. It would appear that MANY people out there will be willing to give assistance when asked so I am leaning towards   " giving it a go". If I become too much of a hindrance, then I reassess the situation and alter plans accordingly.



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Gaye Christie


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When are we there, thank you. I have tried to make it easier on myself but my strength has declined, so even more of a challenge to contend with. It would appear that MANY people out there will be willing to give assistance when asked so I am leaning towards   " giving it a go". If I become too much of a hindrance, then I reassess the situation and alter plans accordingly.



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Gaye Christie


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Hi Gaye.    I'm guessing from some of your latest posts, that you haven't been able to read my Private Message to you.  Have you considered a Campervan ?  I am 81, and have a Toyota Hi-ace Auto Campervan, which I am hoping to get back on the road as soon as possible.  You can get one into most Car-parks, Fuel consumption is good,[depending on how you drive,] and you only have one lot of Insurance and Registration, and one set of Tyres.

Cheers,

Sheba.



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An it harm none, do what you will.


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Hi Sheba.Think that would be go advice.

Got to think if on the road  any  issues mechanical wise.Might help if able to find person in same situation able to tack along.

just a thought.cheers roker.

 



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Member

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Sheba, I was thinking with a 40yr. old brain with a 70yr. old body and a not-so-healthy one at that. I was fortunate to have 4yrs. on the road in my 40's and they were the happiest days of my life. I did it then because my body was not going to do so well as I got older, thanks to a car accident. Well, I forgot that fact in the planning, I feel I bit off more than I can chew. I am so pleased you are enjoying life on the road but feeling very unsure for myself. Thank you.



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Gaye Christie


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Roof, certainly would make it far more manageable, everything is difficult for me, even filling water tanks with massive airlocks knocks me around. May be if I stay in caravan parks more regularly than free camping I will be able to do it.



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Gaye Christie


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Sheba, I do not know my way around the site. I had trouble signing in for several months and have no idea of private messages, sorry..



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Gaye Christie


Chief one feather

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If you go to the top right corner above and sign in you will see highlighted just under it that someone has sent you a message. That is a PM (private message) click on it and it will open up the message. You can read and click reply and type your reply then click send.

Hope that all makes sense and helps.

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Live Life On Your Terms

DOUG  Chief One Feather  (Losing feathers with age)

TUG.......2014 Holden LT Colorado Twin Cab Ute with Canopy

DEN....... 2014 "Chief" Arrow CV  (with some changes)

 



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Gaye, As I am uncertain of your knowledge regarding many tasks related to operation of your caravan may I suggest you do a little study; to assist you should thoroughly read all your manuals and instruction books supplied with van.

You are able to download many FREE Checklists and technical documents at www.caravancouncil.com.au/technical-articles that may assist.

Dr Google is a good source of instructive videos regarding caravan owner self-help on such things as to eliminating air locks when re-filling water tanks.

As you have already found out there is a wealth of information available on forums such as this but you should be aware that (unlike motor cars), there are rarely two caravans that have identical features and operating systems which exacerbates the problem/s.

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Thanks Dougwe. I found it ,thank you



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Gaye Christie


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Hey Gaisie, I wonder whether you are a bit depressed and your uncertainties are motivated/contributed to by how you are feeling rather than your physical issues/limitations. I have some issues and lack strength, some things are difficult for me, but I want to do it so I've found ways around it.

I don't drive huge distances, I keep it shorter so when I arrive I'm not too tired to do anything.  Do something, have a sit down and cuppa, do something else.  There's no timetable, you don't HAVE to have everything hooked up and ship-shape just because the young fit adonis on the next site has his setup achieved in 5 minutes flat. 

When you are setup somewhere, are you enjoying seeing some sites/breathing fresh air/using your van?  If the answer is "not really", why do you think that is?  Do you not enjoy being on your own?  Look at joining a local tour like one that walks around town and tells you about everything.  If there's somebody else on their own, suggest a coffee or ask some questions. 

As for the physical issues, make a list of what's a problem, specifically.  Many things can be addressed.  Somebody's already mentioned a motor mover.  You can get electric jockey wheels.  A different hose fitting might overcome that annoying airlock. 

You may have selected the wrong van for you, a smaller lightweight van might be easier.  I met one lady at a park, she had an Adria and she could manage it on her own.  I've been able to manage with my vans, but only because they are small/light.  I don't think I could manage a big van, even though all the principles are the same.  Getting in to a site is trickier with a longer van, having a comparatively small van can be easier to manoevre. Or a motorhome, as suggested. 

If you are feeling down because it's all "just you", have you considered joining a caravan club?  As I understand it, they organise trips where members go along, you'd have other members to help you out and give you some company.  Or try to find somebody who might want to travel with you?

Don't give up before you've given it a decent go, but if you've made a mistake for you, there's no shame in realising that and selling up.

 

 

 



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Great reply,Spot on with comments.cheers roker.biggrinbiggrinbiggrin



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Hello Gaisie,

Wayne here from the south coast NSW.

I too are 70 (71 actually), and I think I have gone through what your experiencing.

Due to my marriage break up last year, I found myself without a home but with a chunk of money.

I had travelled extensively in the past with a 4wd towing either a camper trailer or caravan.

Last year, having decided that a life on the road was for me, I bought a Prado and Caravan and took
off expecting it to be just like it used to be, but of course it was now many years later and I was now
on my own.

I only did one short trip in the Prado and Van and decided to sell it. I got more than my money back,
so that worked out ok.

In my desire to keep it as simple as possible, I bought a new Jayco 'Renault Master' RM-20.5 Motorhome.
These have been out for a few years now and their are a few Motorhome builders, as well as Jayco, who
build their own version.

Whilst this is a very compact motorhome, it never feels cramped within it, is easy to drive, very economical
and has everything you want.

105litre fuel tank (Av.10L/100 or less)
125L water tank, 40 L grey water,
Cassette toilet, hot water, shower, diesel heater,
large fridge/freezer, 2 couches
........the list goes on but you get what I mean.

It is very easy to live in Gaisie. Everything is close at hand and you do not have to get out to put up the awning.
It is electric and controlled from within.

The reason I changed from the car and caravan combination to a Motorhome was, like you, I no longer had the
energy or the desire to tow a large van anymore let alone the set up.

I can literally pull up anywhere and stay the night knowing that everything I need is in the motorhome, and like I
said it is very easy and pleasurable to drive.

Don't be afraid to admit to yourself that you have made the wrong decision. The decision you made was with the
best of intentions and was based on what you knew and felt at the time. Time changes us all and we no longer can
do what we used to do.

I have no regrets whatsoever in changing to the motorhome. I can fuss with the set up if I want or just simply pull up
cook some dinner and go to bed. It's all up to you.

HOWEVER, IT IS LONELY.

I do prefer my own company most of the time and it has always been that way all my life, but pulling up somewhere in
an isolated location, as beautiful as it may be, I cannot but feel lonely.

To this end, make sure you have a mobile phone just simply so that you can text or phone (if possible) and make contact
with someone so that you know that, in a way, you are not alone. I also have a dongle (Telstra) for my laptop, and I
am typing this on the road somewhere out in the sticks. This also keeps you connected.

I wrote a similar post to yours a few months ago, pretty much expressing the same fears as you. In the end, I read everyone
replies but of course, I had to make the decisions myself.

Changing to a Motorhome was my Plan B. Give it some consideration.

Happy to help you in any way that I can.

Regards,
Wayne

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Guru

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Wayne o wrote:

HOWEVER, IT IS LONELY.


May I suggest you consider taking up Amateur Radio:

Foundation licence



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"I beseech you in the bowels of Christ think it possible you may be mistaken"

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Member

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Possum3, I have watched many instructional videos on the appliances in the van but the air lock I did not even think to. Tried to remember in my younger days when I could do all these things but thr Grey matter is shrinking. I am slowly learning but after any "trial" I am faced with I feel ex



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Gaye Christie
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