What a week for our first week as motorhomers. In fact, what a FEW weeks…….
So our house took longer to finalise than we had initially been told. Which meant 5 extra weeks of Jason not working than we had planned for, which meant five weeks extra of no wages. To say we were stressed is an understatement. To say we were skint doesn’t even come close.
As with every stressful event in my life, I tend to counterbalance the stress with a liberal dose of red wine, however, we were actually that skint we couldn’t even afford me a fiver for a bottle. Bad times. Sober times.
Thankfully, the delay in the house sale came to end, and last Monday we finally completed! Stress over?? Not a chance!
Because of our situation, it wasn’t like a normal house sale where we move out, the buyer moves in and we move in to our new house on the same day. Luckily our buyer was kind enough to give us a couple extra days in the house after the money cleared, which let us buy our motorhome and get organised. I very unwisely told him we only needed till the Wednesday which meant we had two days to get everything done. Obviously this was not enough time and after getting the motorhome on Monday night and packing everything perfectly on the first day, the second day turned into chaos with us literally throwing the contents of our house into the motorhome, along with the kids and the dogs while the buyer patiently waited in the driveway for us to be gone. Two hours later than agreed.
So off we set, with no leisure batteries connected, solar panels on the roof but not hooked up to anything, with not a single clue what we were doing.
Our First Week as Motorhomers
Very (uncharacteristically) sensibly of us, we decided to stay a couple of nights in Haggerston Holiday Park so we could get to grips with the motorhome. Thank fuck we did!
First day, woke up and we had an oil leak. Got that fixed. Stayed an extra night.
Second day, Jason woke up in agony with his throat. It had been playing on him for a few days but we had been so busy and he’d soldiered on hoping it would get better. Anyway, that morning was so bad we had to rush away to a hospital to get him seen. Turned out he had a severe case of tonsillitis. Got antibiotics and painkillers. Stayed another extra night.
Third day, we only had limited electricity despite being hooked into the park’s mains supply with our shiny new £45 (rage!) electric cable. (Limited electricity as in one dim light turned on and the tv). So we tried plugging into the neighbouring pitches’ electricity points incase we had just been unlucky enough to be pitched next to a point that wasn’t working.
(Please god let us just have been unlucky enough to be pitched next to a point that wasn’t working.)
Nope, still didn’t make a difference. We even called down the Park Security who came down to check it out for us. He didn’t have a clue.
So filled with rage and the fear that I’d made the hugest mistake of my life, we spent the night in the dark. Another extra night.
*side note – leisure batteries or solar panels still not connected at this point so the mains supply was our ONLY supply. It’s on the list.
Fourth day, we set off to the nearest Go Outdoors and spend ANOTHER £45 on another cable. Because OBVIOUSLY it must be the cable that’s faulty, right?
So we get back, plug it in, same thing. We are now £90 down on electric cables and I’m trying really hard not to scream my head off. ANOTHER extra night.
Turns out I had tripped the switch making a cup of tea. Problem solved. And £90 in electric cables down the drain. (Note to self – must get 12V appliances so not to overload the electricity).
Wine, I need wine.
But it hasn’t been all bad, and actually the time spent at Haggerston did help us a lot. Here’s what we learned :
* how to (eventually) replace the leisure batteries.
* We can now confidently work the gas cooker, and fridge if need be.
* Our oil leak taught us where the oil goes and that we need to check it regularly. And most importantly, if you have done zero off-road rallying with your motorhome, the chances of the black splattering coming from under the engine and going from the wheels to the top of the roof being muck is slim to nil, and that it’s most likely oil and something that needs checked.
* How to change an indicator bulb
* How to top up the engine coolant (we learned this after leaving the engine running, having it overheat and then sitting for an hour in a car park while it cooled down enough that we could start the engine again. No joke.
* How to change the cassette ( Jason’s job, I am not going near that shit. Literally. )
* And that EVERYTHING takes at least twice as long to do in a motorhome.
But most importantly, we have learned that things go wrong, you can’t always be prepared, you learn as you go, weans and dogs adapt much more easily than adults do and that sometimes shit does happen but it’s never the end of the world.
Our first week as motorhomers, DONE!
To Do List –
CONNECT THE SOLAR PANELS!! And figure out how to work the water supply (we know how to fill the tank and drain it, but the taps/toilet flush don’t seem to work so we need to work that out). Baby steps.
Here’s some pictures from our first week.
Will keep you all updated,