Vantucket is an old girl as far as vans go. Living the Vandweller/full time tiny RV lifestyle takes its toll on both vehicles and owners because we drive a lot and we are in them so many hours. Wear and tear is normal. It can be annoying - And upsetting. And worrisome. It can happen a lot or only once in a while - but we do what we need to do to meet the maintenance needs and keep our vehicles in tip top shape because it is all we have. Some of our incomes are limited and limit our choices for both travel as well as for the prioritizing of maintenance.
Luckily, after the sale of my Scamp, I was able to finally keep an Emergency Fund. Even though past repairs were mostly put on a credit card which has me on a tight budget as I pay that off as quickly as possible.
I am rather sensitive to changes in my vehicle and never felt completely satisfied with the last work done on my front end. While driving from Quartzsite to Ehrenberg AZ a couple days ago, a sound and odd feeling made me drive slowly and change my mind about stopping anywhere along the way. I came straight to camp. Parked and decided that the van was not moving until I knew what was wrong. Mechanic Mike and the other guys at camp took a look and mentioned tie rods...so the desert surgery began. Unfortunately the prognosis is not so good and after some typical mechanic shop swearing and multiple trips to the parts store - Vantucket will go to a shop for new ball joints and alignment. The desert mechanic shop gave her new bearings and tie rods today - and included a heart stopping oh shit - where is everyone, is anyone hurt, what the hell am I going to do now moment when the van fell off the jacks.
So I walked.
Tried to find a tree to pee behind - there aren't many here at this camp.
I fummed about not wanting to live like this anymore.
I drank a coffee with a shot of brandy - it wasn't that good.
I made stew.
I'm tired now and I am sending the van to the shop with someone else because I can't handle anymore stress.
I will be ok.
And I will keep you posted.
BTW RTR was great and tiring and fun and...I love seeing my friends and starting the first fire of the day and making coffee.