It is the moment we've all been waiting for. And it ACTUALLY HAPPENED.
Basically, I was researching RVs (like always) and stumbled on the perfect model (Winnebago Rialta QD) This is a 21 ft motorhome built on a Volkswagon Eurovan Chassis but with a larger Winnebago coach. There are 3 model layouts for this RV, 2 sleep only 2, and the QD sleeps 4. The QD is the holy grail of small family RVs and I found not one, but two, within an hour of here... and then stayed up until 3AM trying to get Mr F to admit this was THE PERFECT RV. And he did.
And then I got up and was making coffee and said to myself:
"This is not something you are getting over, you ALWAYS want an RV, this is the perfect time to do it."
And so we did.
#1 They only made these RVs for a few years, and because of their size (making them parkable in a regular parking spot & easier for covert camping) and excellent gas milage (18 MPG!!!) they are extremely desirable. As in, they have a cult following similar to an Airstream trailer. Which translates into an amazing resale value. Basically any good quality model from 1995-2004 will be worth between 20-40K. So this RV is a 1997 and it is still worth between 20-30K... BUT we got it for 10K. It needs a few very small repairs (deep cell batteries replaced, an exhaust leak) but it is in excellent physical condition. We saw a 2001 the night before, and thank God we did, because then we knew how extraordinarily clean and well maintained this one was (for less $$ mind you!). Even if we only use it for a couple of years we will actually make a profit on owning this RV.
#2 We only own one car, my 11 year old minivan. Welcome to our 2nd car. There are times when we have needed a 2nd car and, honestly, this is the coolest multifunction 10K car around. Bonus, I could drive the kids home from school in this baby and they could do their homework at THE TABLE!!! I have been fantasizing about just that scenario for the past 2 years. That would be hilariously awesome. They could eat breakfast in the RV on the way to school. Hell, they could SHOWER. I could make dinner in the RV while we wait for Kid to get out of basketball practice. People!! The crazy possibilities are endless. Next thing you know, we'll be THESE PEOPLE.
#3 When I was growing up, my grandparents had a Transvan. That was a very similar sized small motorhome on a Ford, Dodge, or Chevy chassis. For me, that is what an RV was. I have always revered the Transvan as the perfect RV and basically the Rialta is the modern version. It has all the components of a larger RV just scaled down in a smaller coach. I know that it will fit us and serve our needs and that I, as a 5'3 woman, can drive it and park it and do all the RV things necessary on my own. Because, let's face it, in all of my RV dreams... Mr F is not with me! Which is good, because he really doesn't get the time off we will need to go to all of the places.
#4 My kids are now 7 & 11. Small enough to actually sleep together on that not quite a full bed captain chair conversion bed. Small enough not to eat so much food that we can't store it in an airplane sized overhead compartment. Small enough not to have too much input on what we are doing for the summer. Big enough to enjoy road trips (which we already do... so no worries on that front), big enough to follow and obey all rules of critical importance. Big enough to empty the black water.... ha... I wish. Basically, I know that we can get 4-5 years of solid summer use out of this RV.
#5 Places to go:
The Laura Ingall's site tour. I MUST DO THIS SOON.
Oh, Canada! I want to drive across Canada.
(see those are already two totally awesome trips that Mr F won't be able to do because of length)
The usual suspects:
Can I drive it to the Florida Keys?
All of the places, people, all of them!
I'm definitely going to need this for more than 5 years.
Why won't my kids agree to homeschool so we can live in it full time!?!
(but not with Mr F or we'd be divorced)
A video tour of our same model (newer but they are actually all identical):
Okay, so right now we had to park it in my mom's driveway while we got it registered and insured (she was close to the seller). But also because this was a fairly spontaneous purchase (we thought we were just checking it out) and Mr F was running late for work and having a mini-nervous breakdown. We're picking it up this weekend and then the fun shall begin. Hopefully we'll have it on the road for a real trip by the end of July.
More to come!