Navigating South


Having routines but not watching our watches, just the movement of the sun and light of the day, that flow made us more productive. We looked back at how we had been trained to get up, go to work, make appointments, follow a schedule, and there didn’t seem to be anything we remembered but the passage of time in that past life. Now we were enjoying what was in front of us; lake life, travel, new experiences.

Life in Osoyoos was good. We could finally see the freedom from schedules that weren’t our own. It was tricky getting the balance right, getting activity and creativity working for us. I signed on for a 30-day writing challenge to build up my practice again of daily writing. This would be on top of writing a weekly blog post and journaling daily to track our life on the road. Packing up the house and then going on the road meant I hadn’t worked on my fiction projects in months. Slowly, I was creating new habits and systems and feeling like a professional again.

We weren’t done with Oliver yet. We went back to the small town to enjoy lunch at the Firehall Bistro - great beer brewed on site - and to purchase US dollars (our bank didn’t have a branch in Osoyoos), and to sign the paperwork for our wills and POAs. We also secured our US/CA data plan on our phones. This was all part of getting ready to travel south.

We knew we had three days of travel to get to our first destination in Nevada. I repacked the storage areas in the Coffee House and the cab of the truck. Jamie looked after the truck bed. We’d never taken a travel trailer across the border and had no idea what to expect. We ate up our produce and checked online for what else could be prohibited by the Customs and Border Protection Officers. We looked at the weather for our trek. We were ready for the inspection.

Were we ready to leave Canada? Prepared to put distance between home and family and friends? No, I wasn’t. Neither of us was sure. This was the biggest thing to let go of, the security of being in our province and in our homeland. In less than a week, we would face our fears and cross the border.

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  • We choose to use our credit cards to pay for most of our transactions in the US. There is a service charge for cash or credit, and we aren’t paying any more to use our Visa than we did to buy US currency. Check your bank for specifics. For us, there is rarely a problem using our cards to shop. Costco cashiers always look twice at our Mastercard and then nod their heads. “Oh, an international card.” At gas stations, we can’t always get the pumps to authorize, but it hasn’t been a huge issue.

  • We wanted our wills and Power of Attorney documents taken care of before we left Canada for six months. It’s one of those things that’s easy to put off, but we’re glad we took care of all of that for our daughter.

  • Living on the road in an RV is exhausting. Take time off regularly from making decisions, from constant activity, and from driving. It’s easy to imagine that full-time RV life is relaxing every day, but that’s not what we’ve found.

Janet KittoComment