By Chuck Woodbury
Have you seen the TV program “Hoarders?” It’s about people with a compulsion to hoard just about everything. Nothing gets thrown away. According to the program, three million people in America qualify as “hoarders.”
Horders’ homes become so cluttered that the residents can barely move. One episode profiled a Phoenix woman whose condo was so filled with stuff (mostly junk) that the largest available space to eat, watch TV or simply relax was on one double bed in the living room. Her two kids’ bedrooms were too packed for them to even reach their beds, much less sleep there. And so they slept on couches in the living room.
I don’t think many RVtravel.com readers are hoarders. This newsletter is read mostly by avid RVers — those who travel a lot throughout the year. More than half of you travel at least two months a year. More than a third of you travel four months or more. About 12 percent live in your RVs full-time.
I believe one of the best feelings associated with RVing is the freedom we experience when we are away from all our “stuff.” Before we head out on a trip, we pare down what we need to a bare minimum. Those 20 pairs of shoes in our home closet get cut down to two or three. We bring six favorite shirts and leave 60 others at home — same with jackets — one or two instead of the dozen at home. Our big stereo system shrinks to a pocket-sized iPod or iPhone. Our bulky family picture albums are digital, viewable on flickr.com in cyberspace.
It’s impossible to be a serious hoarder when you spend much of your time in an RV. Even though I am not a hoarder myself — pretty much the opposite: I love the simplicity of my life in my RV where my collection of “stuff” is a fraction of what it is back home. As I have said before, if my home in Washington were to burn to the ground while I was traveling with my motorhome, I wouldn’t lose much that I would ever miss: What matters most to me would be in my RV. What about you?