Dear RV Shrink:
We have been on our first shakedown cruise with a new class C motorhome. It has been a real eye-opening, learning experience.
I have always taken my waste disposal for granted. I flush the toilet and it disappears forever. Now I get to see it one more time before it goes off to the big sewage system in the great unknown. My problem is not sanitation. I am questioning dump station manners.
In my opinion, so far they stink. My first experience was outside Cody, Wyo. It was a free dump station near a Veteran’s Memorial Park. The sign clearly stated, “No Commercial Dumping.” Halfway through my dumping process a tour bus pulled in. The driver backed up to the hole on his side (this was a two-holer) while his tour guide positioned him over the target. I could not imagine they were going to pull the pin without at least hooking up a hose. When I finally figured out that’s exactly what they were going to do, I screamed to my wife, “Jump or swim.” We hopped in the rig and sped off just as they pulled the plug.
I was so upset I went a little ballistic. I walked back over to the dump station and told them what I thought about their method and inconsideration as we were standing just a few feet away. This is the most extreme example I can list so far, but I am just starting. My wife says I should roll with the punches and not let these people set me off. Should I suffer in silence when I find myself dumping with dopes, or relieve my stress by giving them a little “crap,” so to speak? —Bob in Blackwater, Va.
First, I think you made the right decision: Always run first. I think you will find most fellow RVers to be very polite when it comes to sharing dumping stations. Most will go the extra mile when it comes to cleaning the area before they leave.
Unfortunately, there are always a few bad apples that spoil the barrel. I don’t think losing your temper will make these people act or smell any better. For every dump station user that soils the area, you will find nine that leave the area clean and tidy. Seldom will you be up against a tour bus worth of waste.
Most RVers are using dump stations in a campground setting. I looked your dump station up on the internet. Yes, the internet can even tell you where to take a dump (rvdumps.com). You were at a city dump station that was probably there for the convenience of campers like yourself. Even if these jokers you had to deal with had permission, they still should have been more considerate and squared away, hygienically speaking. Losing your temper in the scenario you described is very understandable. In normal conditions, let it go. No pun intended.
—Keep Smilin’, Richard Mallery a.k.a. Dr. R.V. Shrink
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