A funeral party on campsite #1 ~ Yes, really!

A funeral party on campsite #1 ~ Yes, really!

After I explain that I am a Full-Time RVer and what that means, the second round of questioning usually involves how boring it must be to live in a campground.

Honestly, I am surprised that Hollywood hasn’t picked up on the idea of a campground as a site for a reality TV show. I’ve seen more action, drama and comedy from our RV kitchen window than Hollywood can dish out!

I think one of the most amazing things I ever witnessed at a campground goes back to when I was a teenager. My family had a Coachmen motorhome at the time and we were vacationing (not Full-Timers yet!) at a campground on Lake Okeechobee (Florida). Our campsite was on the canal and we had our own boat dock. I was fishing from the dock while my parents were soaking up the Florida sun in their lawn chairs when we heard shouting coming from the boat ramp area. A friend of ours who was camped a few sites down ran over and told us that we didn’t want to miss the excitement. Curious, we headed down to the boat ramp area only to see a new boat (still attached to the trailer) and pickup truck slowly sink in the canal. The young man had “borrowed” his father’s new pickup and boat to go fishing. The ramp was slippery (I remember how scary it was for us to back our boat down with the motorhome) and he didn’t bother to engage the parking brake. The poor boat, still strapped to the trailer, didn’t have a chance! To this day I get a chuckle at the memory of that young man shaking his head saying, “I’m so grounded.”

One of the funniest things was to see a RV sink. Not just any RV – an American Eagle Motor Coach! It was actually my first year as a Full-Timer (and I was living alone in a RV resort in South Florida). I was preparing dinner and heard a commotion outside. I saw the motor coach backing into the empty site on the opposite corner. Immediately after backing into the site, the rear tires of the RV sank into the soft sand. His wife was yelling at him to pull forward, unfortunately, this buried it even deeper. By the time he got out of the motor coach, half of the back section was buried in sand.  It didn’t take long for a crowd to gather and offer help. The man started shoveling, trying to dig out the tires, while others found items to try to drive up on. After digging out the tires, the man started up the RV and tried to drive forward. Of course, this made it worse and once again, he was digging not only sand, but the boards that got broken during the attempt. When he made the second attempt, he took a tow chain that a fellow Camper offered and he had his wife get in their tow vehicle (which had been dropped prior to the backing) and start it up. She began backing their vehicle while he drove forward in the RV. Needless to say, the language was rather colorful after that attempt! Another Camper offered to use his 3/4 ton Chevy truck to pull the RV forwarded and that did work. Once he had the motor coach back in the street, he ordered his wife to walk every campsite first. It was hilarious watching her walk nearby available sites, stomping the ground madly, as if that would prove the ground wouldn’t sink their RV. Unfortunately during all this, I didn’t think about getting it on video. I’m pretty sure that would have gotten me $10,000 quite easily!

One day while living at a Florida RV resort we saw a brand-new motorhome drive by. We could hear Campers already going over to see if the new arrivals needed assistance and we continued eating. Suddenly we heard the motorhome backing up and then a load crash. We bolted from the picnic table only to see a group gather around the back end of the motorhome. The man hit a palm tree and the RV “bounced” forward. While a crowd gathered around to help, they really didn’t – as they were too busy talking to the man’s wife commenting on how beautiful their new motorhome was! No one was even watching him back-up! Fortunately the palm tree was spared. 😉

I could literally write a book (or a soap opera) on campground living, but the one thing I never, ever thought I would witness in a campground is a funeral. Not only that, but one right outside our living room! We were staying in Washington at the time and our campground was on the edge of a historic cemetery. The very first site of the campground actually overlooked the cemetery. We were camped two sites away from it, but joked that we had “dead quite” neighbors. As it turned out, during our last week there, a member of one of the local tribes passed away and was buried in the cemetery. They held his funeral party on the first campsite. Since it was a chilly day, they even started a campfire. (That’s our rig in the photo above.)

From seeing pot-bellied pigs in tutus (with their own tents I might add) to watching a man wrestle a wayward gator, I would never consider living in a campground boring!