It was late summer in 2013 and we were taking a long weekend trip to southern Ireland by car when, in the early stages of our journey, The wife says “Wouldn’t it be an idea to buy a camper-van then we wont have to kennel the dogs but they can come with is?”.
Those that know me will know that whilst I may not appear to be giving any thought to such a query will know that somewhere in a dark and probably scary corner of my mind this will be being analyzed and processed even, quite often, unbeknown to my conscious thoughts.
By the time we reached our hotel in Waterford this passing thought had developed and grown to the size that my brain had decided can no longer be processed in the background and had pushed it into my conscious thought processes and I was giving, on and off, some serious consideration.
This didn’t help to put the camper van idea aside as we both agreed the dogs would love it up here. I also had forgotten how much I loved the mountains and having spent many hours, some years back, walking and camping in the mountains of England and Wales the yearning to be able to go up into the mountains again returned with some earnest and owning a camper van would make that very possible.
On the journey home, some 12 hours of traveling, we started to discuss the idea further and quite favorably I might add. I had rationalized that we really could not afford to run two vehicles but if we got one of a size I could get into a car park with we could use it as our only vehicle. After all the amount of local trips I take are pretty much non existent now.
Over the next few days I started to do some research into this camper-van idea and the idea started to grow into something much much bigger as I started to read about “full timers”, those that have moved out of their house to live permanently in a motor home.
All this was very nice and a lovely idea but the cost of a motor home was going to be a major stumbling block and as a result I kind of put the idea to one side for one day in the future.
Within a few days of this set aside I had an appointment with my bank to discuss how they can save me money on my account. This was a very short meeting as I pointed out within about 30 seconds that their new account will actually cost me more.
As I was about to leave the young lady I was talking to just mentioned in a very casual way that was I aware that I have a £25,000 facility on the account if I needed. Bang! I was stopped dead in my tracks but not only that the, previously set aside, motor home idea came smashing its way through my thoughts screaming very loudly that its still there and here is a solution.
I told the young lady that no I was not aware and what would be the repayments on that? She typed some stuff into her computer terminal and then removed a sheet of paper from the printer and handed it to me. Nearly £600 per month over 5 years. I thanked her and left.
Now there is no way I could afford a repayment of that size in my current situation BUT if we were to become full timers without the cost of the rent, council tax, water rates, gas, electricity, phone, sky plus probably a few others we are going to have so much spare money it would be ridiculous.
Yes there will be other costs for example site fees, diesel, gas etc but there is no way they are going to be as large as the current ones put together.
Even if it all worked out the same it wouldn’t have mattered now as my dream of traveling and seeing the world that I have had since in my late teens was now a very real possibility.
On arriving home I told Ann what I had just been offered and that we could afford, in fact will be better off, our motor home.
Over the next few weeks I start to look much much deeper into this idea with lots of research and it begins to dawn on me that so far I have not found any negatives to embarking on this adventure. We have also begun to discuss this plan, oh yeah its a plan now not just an idea, with friends and family.
This is where I expected to get comments and advice on why this is a stupid and we would be mad to do it. WRONG!! not a single person we spoke to thought this and everyone said it was a great idea and we should go for it.
Its seems a bit strange to admit but the lack of reasons not to do it started alarm bells ringing in my head, surely there must be a downside to this. So I became a little obsessed with finding at least one or two. Then I realized Ann had not actually seen inside of one of these things and when she does she is going to not be quite so keen.
We happen to be in North Wales taking a weekend break with a couple of friends when I found a motor home dealer just round the corner to where we are staying so suggested we take a look.
So all four of us drive round there and start to wander around peering in the widows of all these motor homes. We eventually find one thats open so in we go for a look and i’m think wait for it, its about to come all crashing down.
WRONG AGAIN!! Ann absolutely loves it and sees nothing but good things and marvels at the storage space and how cleaver they have been and can still do her baking as it has an oven.
Oh for crying out loud this is actually going to happen!