1. a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common. “a community of retired persons”
2. a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. “the sense of community that organized religion can provide”
When we started this adventure almost three years ago we assumed because we would be moving around quite regularly, for the most part we were now transient vagabonds- homeless gypsies- that we would lose all sense of a community that we loved and knew growing up in small towns in Central New York. Being able to go to the grocery store and see familiar faces smiling no matter the time or driving around and knowing who lived where was just going to be something we had when we went home. It was going to be a sacrifice we made for our love of travel and being on the road, and that was ok, it wasn’t ideal but we were willing to make these type of sacrifices.
It is interesting what you learn after you get on the road. Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly…the community thing was slowly. I don’t think it really hit us until we were leaving California, seven months into living on the road, we had just finished out first workcamping position and we were having a “hot dog roast and potluck going away party”. Two things actually hit: that we had enough friends in our short stay to have a party and we actually loved these people. In a short time we built a community of friends from the local gold miner, to the homesteader across the street, to Roger a fellow RVer that we shared many fires and stories with. Every time we went into Angels Camp we stopped in Stories in Stones to say hi to Russ and Pam and discuss for hours the amazing collection of rocks the offer. We built a fellowship or friends as a result of sharing common interests, attitudes, and goals!
Years later what I am realizing is that don’t have to sacrifice community to be on the road, we get to enjoy a sense of community in so many different ways then just staying in one places, not that it is better, it is just different. We have our RV community a group of fellow full time RVers that we keep in touch with as much as we can as we travel around this beautiful country. If we have trouble we help each other out. We know that they have our back and we definitely have theirs if they need anything and we can help, they are like our family out here. Then we get to experience community every time we land in a new place. We are currently in Indio, CA spending three weeks at a park and we have gotten to know most of the people at this small park, Justin just walked in with Mr. Britz’ contact info so we can keep in touch when we leave on Saturday. When we walk the dog here we know everyone and it feels like home. Friday is Justin’s birthday and the park is throwing him a birthday party.
Community is what you make it. You see what you want to see right? We could have pulled in kept to ourselves, not talk to many people and left after three weeks but we want community so I think we create it. We enjoy being around positive, friendly people who share our common interests, attitudes and goals so we build it wherever we are. It is surprising not hard, especially with RVers. From our experience they are natural sharers and are the kindest people.. They love to talk and most of the time have some of the greatest stories! You meet the most interesting people out here!
It’s hard being away from friends and family, it is the hardest part of being on the road and probably the biggest con (and one of the only) if we made a list. Sometimes it is tough not being able to grab lunch with a friend on her birthday because your states away or go home for the holidays. But the community thing is just untrue. We do have family out here, not in the conventional way but our own way. We will continue to find the others down that road of happy destiny.