No matter how much reading you do, how much preparation, there will still be odd gotchas living on the road. These are things that you don’t think of until you’re at a state park in New Mexico and it’s 25 miles to nearest big box grocery store. When you’re least accessible is when the things you didn’t think of will arise.
Most of these can be managed with a little planning, if you know about them in advance. Here were some of the little things that were sometimes frustrating to deal with on the road.
Medications and Medical Care
Being in another state when a medical or medication emergency strikes can add a layer of complication. These days it’s far less of a problem than just a few years ago. A big chain pharmacy, pretty much the only ones left anymore, have no trouble pulling up your prescriptions almost anywhere. Medical care can be a bit trickier when your doctor is three states and two time zones away. The doctor you might be seeing in another state doesn’t know you or your medical history.
A major surgery or extended treatment, like chemotherapy, is a different gig. For chemo you might have to stay in the same place for months and there will be side effects. You may need help hooking up or moving your camper in an emergency. We were never at a campground where we were unable to find a neighbor to pitch in and help. We knew more than one person who went through cancer treatments and several who had surgery. Sometimes they needed to schedule an extended stay somewhere to accommodate the time. The advantage is if you need specialty treatment in another state, you can just go there.
Even as a last ditch option, renting a furnished place for a few months would also be an option.
This is also not a problem in most civilized areas but we were trying to work with vets from western Tennessee who didn’t want to give us prescriptions so we could get our dog’s meds mailed to us wherever we were. This isn’t so much a general problem but make sure you can get your pet medications anywhere. Small town vets in rural TN are not who you want to count on when you’re on the road. We’ve never had this problem anywhere but there, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.
Again, far less of a problem these days, unless, like me, you need broadband. Even today there are many parks that don’t have WiFi, have paid WiFi or have really weak connections. In fairness it’s hard to set up service for an area the size of an RV park and darn near impossible in places like state parks. Fortunately, mobile data plans are much improved but working totally on a mobile connection is still a challenge and, if you’re a Netflix addict like me, still really expensive. If you’re going to be at the same park for a long time, you can get broadband installed at your site in most parks. There are still places in the U.S. where even cell services is spotty.
Technology is making mobile living easier than ever before but there are still odd challenges to living on the road. So many of our processes are built around having an address.