I left my home base September 8th. My first stop was a tiny little city owned campground. It was very nice and only for one night. It was a busy place because the locals played ball and walked the walking paths. The next night was a stop at a KOA. Very crowded and noisy with an Interstate behind and a highway in front of the campground. Wonderful facilities though. I did do some grocery shopping while I was there. Next stop was a really nice campsite right on the Tennessee River where I stayed for the weekend. It was a gorgeous stay! On Monday, I left there and moved onto another city campground which was nice but I was attacked by fire ants and there were no extra facilities (restrooms and showers) for campers. I left there and arrived in Sherling Lake Park and Campground where I planned to stay for 2 nights.
By the evening of my first day at Sherling Lake, I was sick. So, I extended my stay to a week. Normally, I would be feeling much better after a week but I had to extend my stay to 2 weeks. This did not upset me at all as I’d fallen in love with Sherling when I arrived. The longer I stayed, the more I liked it. I even considered not coming on down to Dauphin (pronounced Daw-feen) Island. Eventually, decided to come on down but I didn’t want to make the entire drive in one day so I stayed for a couple of nights in Creola.
When I arrived in Dauphin Island, there was a strong breeze off the Gulf and Bay so the 80+ degree temperature did not bother me. I took a walk to the beach and noticed several oil rigs (12 – 15 of them) just off the coastline. The community is rebuilding the beach which is non existant right now; it should be done in the next couple of months. There’s a bike path which extends the length of the island (a little less than 8 miles) which is level and wonderful! After 4 days, the breeze died and the mosquitos came out. There are a lot of mosquitos here and they are here all day long. The lack of breeze also makes the temperature more noticable. Since I don’t tolerate heat well and I do not enjoy being a mosquito feeder, I am ready to leave. I will probably stay until the end of the month when I will be heading back to Sherling to spend the rest of the Winter.
I’m learning what I do and don’t like. I would have enjoyed staying at Dauphin if the breeze would have continued to keep the mosquitos at bay. But I’m also happy to be heading back to Sherling because I simply loved the woods and the spaciousness. Dauphin is a normal RV park and, while they do their best to give everyone room to be outside without the back side of an RV in their face, it is too close for my preferences. Since I have a couple weeks left on my stay here and I cannot be outside because of the heat and lack of breeze, I am spending time catching up on computer work and I plan to spend some time at the beach on the West end. The West end of the island is about 1/8th mile wide and gets breezes from the Gulf and the Bay so no mosquitos and it feels less hot. If I can find ways to be outside without getting overheated, I will stay here until the end of the month. If not, I will go back to Sherling.
One thing I’ve really noticed during this trip is how my blood pressure is affected. While in Sherling, I was not taking my blood pressure medication every day because my pressure was really low. When I moved to Dauphin, I suddenly had to take the medication every day and, sometimes, twice per day. I began to notice the twice per day dosages were on days when someone was parked beside me. The more people, the more trouble I have keeping my blood pressure down. If, when I move back to Sherling, my blood pressure drops again, that will strongly imply my blood pressure is connected to what is going on within other people’s bodies.
I know this is very possible for me because, when I did hands-on work with people, I use to tune into my body to see what I was feeling because my body would mirror what was happening within the person on whom I was working; I could feel what they were feeling. I am trying to break this connection but, at this time, I am failing. The blood pressure issue may also determine whether I stay in Dauphin until the end of the month or return to Sherling early.
So far I am finding I love the woods! I also love the water when it a wide expanse of uninterrupted space. In order for me to love the woods, it needs to be in a location which is not kept sprayed with herbicides and pesticides. The care of the area needs to be natural. I also love seclusion. I admit it is really challenging to find seclusion in an RV park. Which is why I am figuring out how to make my RV more boondocking friendly. My lights are already set up to work off of my batteries. I have also doubled my batteries and bought a portable solar panel to charge them. The outlets will not work off my batteries and, while I do have a DC outlet, the DC outlet is located in my bedroom which makes it inconvenient when cooking. I plan to install an inverter which will change the battery DC power to AC power so I can use my outlets throughout the RV. I also want to install a composting toilet to replace my current normal toilet. Doing all this work means I will probably spend all of next Summer close to my home base so I have access to a mailing address for orders, tools for doing the changes, and help from my husband and other people with expertise in this area. Once these changes are in place, I will be able to boondock for at least 2 weeks without needing access to water to fill my holding tank. The more conservative I can be with water, the longer I can stay out in the boonies.
I’m very much enjoying my time in Nature. I’m excited to learn what I do and don’t like when camping. And, I’m excited at the prospect of learning a new skill to keep my blood pressure down. As an aside, I’ve lost at least 15 pounds. I don’t have a scale but I have to wear a belt and I’ve had to punch more holes in the belt to keep it and my pants up. The differences in my eating are: I’m cooking at home, eating more, having dessert 1 – 3 times per day. I am not exercising though I am more active; not enough to lose weight though. I believe the lack of stress and the ability to sleep, sit in the sun, and doing what I want to do when I want to do it is making the difference. I’m also writing a book; I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned that before or not.