Chicago – Working inside the RV

I’m sitting inside my Rialta. It’s Monday, 8:24am, Chicago time. It’s 9:24am, Eastern time. I’m working my job with a laptop and voip phone. My phone is getting Sprint 4G internet which is tethered to my laptop via USB which feeds internet to my voip phone via ethernet cable.

I’m hungry. The fringe and stove are off. All I have are water and chips. I still have to work my Eastern US based  job schedule; there’s 4.5 hours left. Maybe, I can take a lunch break and grab some chicken from Mr. Pollo down the street later.

Yesterday, I drove some nine hours from Pittsburgh to Chicago. An amazingly dull and exhausting ride. The traffic outside of Chicago is the worse I’ve ever seen. It must be some combination of a White Sox game and Lollapalooza ending. Chicago also has the highest gas prices of any US city.

I parked about a mile north of Logan Square, a neighborhood mixture of young hipsters and Mexican families. Got a beer and sandwich at Longman & Eagle and then stopped in New Wave Coffee to relax and do some planning. It’s funny how all the hipster coffee shops from Florida to Chicago look exactly the same. The dilapidated, unusual mix of chairs, sofas, and odd airplane seat. The fine selection of loose leaf tea. The skinny and tattooed patrons.

Walking home, I started feeling really bad. I was exhausted. I had paid around $200 traveling 800 miles. I could have flown and saved time and money. I still wasn’t sure where I was staying in Colorado or what I was going to do afterwards. I was in a strange city with no friends, no real home, and no stories.

Of course, I knew from experience this was just physical fatigue. I would feel better after sleeping. And the same night, my friend contacted me that I could stay at her place in Boulder for the week. So, the RV thankfully cooled down with windows open, and I was able to mercifully fall asleep.

I never really noticed this before, but streets are always at a slight angle in order to channel water. This means I have to sleep at a slight angle which is an odd feeling. Although there were cars driving past, and the odd pedestrian, I’m getting acclimated to staying relaxed. The entire RV traveling is an interesting type of mindfulness practice.

This RV is sixteen years old. I constantly fret and worry that something might break, but it has actually been a real trooper. I’m still debating whether to keep it and really make it my own or sell it once I get to the West Coast. So far, all my trips have been frantic dashes to reach a faraway destination  in as few days as possible. This makes poor traveling experience and negates the entire purpose of the RV. But, maybe, I’ll find better use for it on the West Coast.

Despite all the anxious moments, the truth is that the RV pays off itself in spades in terms of experience even if it seems like a financial mistake right now. I’ve unexpectedly meet and reconnected with some really great people that would never have occurred otherwise. And, while traveling, there’s a sort of forced liveliness and mindfulness. It’s not possible to waste time because it is so preciously scarce.


Klink is a great Android app for sharing internet, and the author is a great guy.