The Funk of a Thousand Years!
Okay, drydocking has its charms and benefits. There’s the whole challenge of seeing how long your fresh water will last and your black and gray water will fill up. Can we last the week? or will we have to break camp and take Gypsy to the dump station early?
For those of you who don’t know what I’m talking about, I’ll break it down:
- Drydocking is when you set up camp, either tent, RV, or car, in a place designed for camping, i.e. flat ground or pad for parking, cleared of vegetation, or listed as a place where overnighting is allowed. However, you are camping without any hookups. No water. No sewer. No electricity. No Wi-Fi. Now cable. Nothing but dirt and sky.
- Fresh water, as you can guess, is the drinkable water that is in a holding tank.
- Gray water is what goes down the sinks. It’s mostly clean, but will have soap and food particles in it.
- Black water is the tank that holds what goes down the toilet. As Cousin Eddie calls it, “The Shitter.”
One benefit to drydocking is it’s CHEAP. The only money we spend is for the gas in the generator, which averages about $15 for a week. We do not run it all day and night, usually a couple hours in the morning and again in the evening, long enough to charge the phones, battery, watch the news and make coffee.
Another benefit is it’s usually quiet. The place we’re at now is an active hunt camp, and we’re in open gun season. Also, they hunt with dogs and their pickups rather than tree stands and on foot. There’s a lot of hound sounds in the woods and in the kennels, and truck noises, but I actually enjoy the noise. The hounds’ bays can really sound unnerving, like what one might expect a banshee to sound like. The hunters also run their generators all night, which I find soothing, to be honest. I’ve read reviews from others who despise generators on principle, and we had personal experience with a grumpy German two campgrounds ago regarding our generator (We observed quiet hours, and turned it off by 8pm, he just always passively-aggressively bitched about it), but it makes a nice white noise to sleep to.
Third, if you’re wanting to GET AWAAAY FROM IT ALL as Goofy told Max, Drydocking can do it quite well. Some spots you can spend the whole time without seeing another soul. You are also “off the grid” if you turn off your location on your phone. Some places have absolutely no signal, rendering your $800 phone an expensive paperweight and solitaire machine.
Drydocking ain’t all roses, though. Literally, NO ROSES. After a couple weeks without a shower only birdbaths (remember, we try going a week on the fresh water) The camper has begun to smell like ass and feet. Thank God we’re in Florida and the weather’s warm enough to open the windows and canvases! and run the fans… and sit outside… Thank God Glade is only $1 at the Dollar Tree. Thank God for wet wipes and deodorant. And it still smells like ASS and FEET.
Also, conserving water affects how often I do dishes. To save on that, we use a lot of paper plates, plasticware and paper towels. We eat a lot of sandwiches, too. But I do cook. When I do, I make things whose leftovers can become other things. Or, that can be eaten for a few days. Chili, for example, is good to eat for a coupe days, or I can put the leftovers in a gallon ziploc and throw it in the freezer. Spaghetti becomes baked spaghetti. Grilled chicken is chicken salad or chicken spaghetti or chicken chili. But there are still those pesky dishes that must be washed. tomorrow. or the day after… gotta save that water and space in the gray tank.
Another negative with drydocking is it’s annoyingly quiet and lonely and gets boooooring without Wi-Fi or TV or an activity center or another human I don’t smell everyday to speak to (remember Ass and Feet?) It’s so quiet that every single noise makes me anxious if something just broke in the camper. It’s hard to fall asleep when you can hear the cricket farts a mile away. And I’m out of the look with what’s going on in the world. Also, we had some significant storms roll through the other day, and we might not have known we were in danger. The EMA sends out alerts on the phone, but sometimes there’s no service.
Another thing that’s a pain with drydocking is you’re usually thirty minutes from anywhere. This may not always be obvious when looking at a map. When we stayed at Butcher Pen Landing on the East River, we were a little over 5 miles from Eastpoint or Apalachicola… on the map, as the crow flies. However, Wolverine does not fly. He requires ROADS. And all roads to anywhere… gas station, grocery store, church, HOSPITAL… took a half an hour or more to get to any destination. Heck, the nearest Walmart was over an hour away!
So… we have another couple weeks of drydocking to go. We’re waiting for our upgrade to kick in and we can stay at Coast to Coasts for free. If it don’t kick in by the first, I’ll fork over the cash to stay in one… lol… $10 per night is worth a shower, I suppose. It’s cheaper than Pilot/Flying J… they charge $12 for a shower.
If anyone wants to fund our shower and put an end to our SWASS, I have a Venmo! @thekooolaidmom 😀
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