I camped for the first time in a tent in 2013 — admittedly, everyone was calling it the Taj Mahal and the title was pretty accurate. It had carpeting, a tall mattress, and a ceiling fan, with lots of square footage. It only took two years for me to realize that wasn’t enough.
I still have the tent and all of that gear, and I’m sure I’ll use it again someday. In 2015, I bought a travel trailer to tow behind the Jeep. I loved my time in it, but it took two years to realize that it was a lot of work. Each time I set it up or broke it down I ended up sweaty, dirty, and often bloody. I couldn’t break it down in the rain. I wasn’t safe from bears and I couldn’t store any food in it. Even with all of those drawbacks I still loved it, but it wasn’t enough.
In September of 2017 I had to wait a while for the popup to dry out after a rain. Just before it was time to leave the campground or pay for another day, I was ready to connect the Jeep to the folded-up trailer when the Jeep wouldn’t start. I got it started after some help from neighbors in the campground, and then hydroplaned in rain on the way home. My hand was still bleeding from the break down of the popup, I was dirty, and I was exhausted. That’s when I started shopping for something better.
I knew I needed to tow the Jeep with something, rather than tow something with the Jeep. A truck, camper, and trailer seemed like a great idea, but I didn’t need or want a truck for anything else. That was an expensive solution, so I started looking at motor homes. I had it narrowed down to Class A motor homes for the power they had for towing as well as how roomy they were. I knew the floor plan and manufacturers I was considering. There was a specific coach in Texas that kept coming up in my searches, and after a couple weeks I contacted them.
Motor Home Specialists in Alvarado, Texas was awesome from start to finish. There were lots of photos of the coach, and I worked with a sales guy on the phone for about a week, bugging him with a million questions. Then I decided to buy it and booked a flight to Dallas. They picked me up at the airport, and I had the paperwork signed by noon that day.
The dealership is one of the biggest ones in the country, and they let you camp onsite until you’re ready to leave. I stayed all weekend, and they answered questions and came over to help me the entire time, whenever I needed them. My friend Nyree lives in Dallas, and she stayed with me — we did a lot of shopping. The dealership loaned a car to me, too. It was pretty perfect.
I left that Sunday for Amarillo where I stayed at the KOA there and worked that week in the city. Then I drove home. It drives much easier than the Jeep now that I’m used to it. I’m in love! I’ve named her Florence, and I’m really excited for what the future holds.