Full-time RVing … page two of our story, answering your questions of what lead up to our decision to become full-time RVers. Auctions and flea markets were the gateway to our becoming RVers.
We began to go to the local auction house more regularly and to buy more volume. What little spare time we had we spent cleaning, fixing, pricing, and packing flea market stuff. Some I took to the monthly market and the rest we packed away for my summer weekends flea market booth.
My passion for the child development program at the university was creating it, implementing it, and seeing that it got off to a successful start. Doing the day-to-day administration of it was rather ho-hum. I left that job in the spring.
There were auctions in Rapid City, 45 miles away, three nights a week, and another in a neighboring town, about 15 miles away. We went to these as often as we could, depending on whether or not Bob could get home from work early enough to make it there. Not only did we enjoy the bargain hunting aspect, we also simply enjoyed the time doing something together.
The outdoor flea market consisted of rows of mini-storage like garage buildings, where the vendors each rented a unit. The routine was to set up displays inside, with one table of merchandise out in front. At the end of the day, the one table would be tarped or moved back inside until next weekend. I rented one of these spaces.
There were also open-air spaces at the market, and the bigger vendors rented the space immediately opposite their unit. Not only did I follow suit, I rented the adjoining space. By the end of the summer, I had half a dozen or so outside spaces.
Part way through the summer, another vendor had a travel trailer for sale. It was a 12 foot long, 1962 Winnebago, with a working fridge and electrical system, a bed, dinette, some storage space. I bought it for $200, on a whim.
We quickly fell into another routine. We'd go to Rapid for the auction on Friday night. If Bob had to work late, I’d drive up by myself and he’d join me later. We’d take our new stock out to the flea market and spend the night in our trailer that we left parked there. If he had to work Saturday, he’d return to Deadwood in the morning. If he didn’t he’d stay and help me work the tables. If he’d left Saturday morning, he’d return Saturday night. It was more likely that he’d be able to stay and help on Sunday, but not always.
As fall approached, I heard rumblings of other dealers talking about going to Quartzsite, Arizona. A few talked about their snowbird headquarters in the Texas Valley and the big flea market they worked in Donna. Transient vendors talked of where they’d been or where they were headed. I didn’t think I paid much attention.
In September, a Country Living Magazine I was reading had a little blurb about people who lived full-time in their RVs. It mentioned the Escapees RV Club.
Full-time RVing…. The gears in my minding were spinning. Could we?