One of the advantages of having a house on wheels is that when you don’t like the weather you can just pick up and go. We have been staying at the amazing LVM RV Resort in Las Vegas (more about this in an upcoming blog post). Everyone told us to head north for the summer and they were right. Continuous days and nights in the extreme dessert heat was unbearable.
So, Elsy went to work and found a few gems. Here are some pictures of the last 4 weeks. The pictures will not do this place justice but we have enjoyed not having to run the Air conditioner and waking up to amazing mountain air.
We will keep everyone posted and maybe see you along the way :).
Other than the essentials (water, electricity, food, etc), consistent wifi is vital for us to make this whole thing happen. We have conference calls, phone interviews, and of course, the need to search for people online. We did tons of research and invested in the top of the line solution (Wife Ranger – Elite Pack FM), it’s not cheap. Our antenna broke or was stolen somewhere between a snowstorm in New Mexico and landing in Utah. I just received a new antenna and will mount before we head off to Austin.
We are so impressed with our little ACE. Keep in mind that the is an entry level gas powered RV. Even though the price tag is high for the everyday person (85-90k), in the RV world, this model is made for the occasional trip and NOT “full timing”. So far so good. We did crack our windshield :/ but our insurance covered the replacement.
Couldn’t be happier with the mobile lifestyle and we are focusing on trying to upgrade the RV and do this full time.
For the podcast this year I’m committed to searching far and wide for the most interesting stories and ideas in recruiting and HR. Change is now a constant in our world and the people who are prepared to strike out from the norm and experiment are the ones driving innovation. My guest this week is a brilliant example of what is possible when you think about things differently.
Larry Hernandez is currently a Talent Scout for Thought Works having formerly worked for bothRackspace and Zappos. By working while driving round America in an “RV” he is bringing a whole new meaning to mobile recruiting.
In the interview we discuss:
• Why Larry choose his unique approach to work life balance
• What it is like to source and recruit on the road
• How his alternative lifestyle is helping build connections with candidates
• His experiences of working in the unique culture at Zappos where his team were the beta test for the much talked about move to holocracy.
Larry also talks about recruiting innovation and his predictions for where things are going (including him and his RV!) in 2016
It’s been about three months since we started our new adventure on the road. Looking back at all the “what ifs” and “unknowns” of making this huge change, I laugh to myself. Fear of the unknown can is so powerful! It amazes me at how powerful the stories we tell ourselves can be. And where do these stories come from? Well, I guess it doesn’t matter where they come from, the important thing is that they are just stories. Start telling yourself some new stories! Ok, enough of that for now.
Surprisingly, we haven’t had too many mishaps, but we have learned so much.
RV refrigerators hate to be unlevel. Long story short, the night before we were about to take off on our first big trip to Chicago, we had our RV parked in our driveway (which is very steep). Elsy noticed that our fridge was still warm. “Oh know ” I thought. We bought a brand new RV and the fridge is already broken. Well, just a few minutes on youtube and the problem was fixed. If your RV is on a very unlevel ground, your fridge will not work.
Flat Tire. Well, not a flat tire, just a huge bolt stuck in the tire. After a small tantrum in my head, we googled some tire repair shops and $50 and a couple of hours later, we were back on the road.
3. Electrical System. Just like living in an old house or apartment. The RV electrical system can only handle so much. Just know where your fuse box is and buy some extra fuses (they are cheap). We have it down now. If we try to run the microwave while our electric space heater is one, “pop goes the fuse”. No big deal. Just unplug the heater and reset the fuse box. Keep in mind that there is a master fuse box outside (if you are using the RV parks electrical) and depending on what model RV you get, there is usually one master outlet (ours is in the bathroom) that has a reset button.
4. Invest and upgrade your black water hose. AKA – your sewage hose.
$24.00 on Amazon. Camco 39761 RhinoFLEX 15′ Sewer Hose Kit with Swivel Fitting.
5. When staying cold climates, invest in a heated water line. Nothing sucks more than having to mess around with a leak in the middle of the night when it’s 14 degrees. Enough said.
6. RV GPS. The first half of our big Chicago journey, we just used my iPhone and Google Maps. Thanks to Amazon Prime, we had an RV GPS shipped to us while we stayed at an RV park. We got the Garmin RV GPS. It’s pricey, but the cool thing is that once you enter your RV height and length, the GPS will create routes that will keep your from crossing under bridges and older highways that are too low for your RV.
7. Good Sunglasses for the driver. Nothing is scarier that driving a school bus in traffic and getting blinded by the sun. Invest in a good pair of polarized sunglasses. Maui Jim works for me. An added plus on long 8 hours drives is that a good pair of sunglasses makes the drive less taxing on the drivers eyes.
I will add to this as we think of more. If you have questions, please comment and I will try and answer.
The Good Life
Waking up every morning and breathing fresh air from new places is amazing. Going to sleep knowing that we are not on vacation, knowing that we don’t have to go “back to work” on Monday is so wonderful. I don’t know what the future holds, but in taking this chance, and moving one step closer toward my dream, I have stumbled upon true happiness.
First off, thanks for stopping by and checking out our blog. The first blog post is the hardest, so bare with me. The goal this blog is to share our journey and transformation to a mobile lifestyle.
Just a couple of months ago all of “this” was just a daydream. If you would have told me three months ago, that we (Elsy, Jax, & Bruno) would purchase a brand new RV and travel 2,500 hundred miles in two weeks while both working remote, I absolutely would not have believed you. I would have said something like:
“Too many things could go wrong. You can’t just make several life changes all at once.”
It’s Real – We Really Did it!
There were so many things that had to work out for this change to happen, and I don’t want to go over all the details, but let me list a few here so you can appreciate what we have done and maybe even get inspired yourself.
What had to happen to make this possible (Each item below deserves it’s own blog post – and that’s the plan)
Remote Work Arrangement for Elsy and I (Elsy was already working remote, so we were halfway there)
Larry has to find a contract sourcing/recruiting role with a bad ass company.
Contact network and put feelers out (Who is hiring – Who is cool with remote work – find a culture fit)
Phone interview / Video interview with short list of companies.
Consider offers and possible relocation options and select a new home.
Give notice and transition out.
Make sure the new company was ok with me traveling around the country in an RV.
Consider and figure out tax implications and a plan to start working contract.
We needed to get health insurance
Do we talk to a broker to directly to the insurance companies?
Find a plan that won’t break the bank but will give us the coverage we need.
Research and physically look at as many RV’s to find the right RV for us and one we could afford.
What kind of RV do we need?
Do we tow an RV (5the wheel) one or get one you drive?
Do we get a Class A, Class B, Class C and what the heck is the difference?
Do we get gas or Diesel?
What size do we get (24 ft to 40+ ft)
New or Used?
Do we tow my car when we travel? If so, what kind of tow hitch do I need?
Can I really drive a huge RV?
Is the mobile lifestyle for us? We all need to be on board 100%, or this will not work.
Is it safe out there on the road?
Get RV insurance
Select and haggle with RV dealers and go through the financing of a huge purchase.
Where are we going to park this huge RV when we are at home?
Can I drive this monster through big city traffic and construction zones?
What if we breakdown in the middle of nowhere?
Make our new RV a Mobile Recruiting Vehicle
Figure out the best solution for internet (satellite, free hot spots, 4G mobile WiFi)
Make sure our mobile phones could get signal into the RV (RV is a huge box with lots of metal)
Make sure we can power up all of our technology while traveling and camped.
Make sure our house is taken care of while we are on the road
Make sure Bruno and Jax have everything they need while traveling
Wow – I know I probably forget something but you get the idea. Keep in mind that all of this is new for us and I really was overwhelmed and worried that I would make one wrong decision that would set us back somehow (career wise, financially, our well-being). Let me say this again because I don’t think one sentence really does it – I was scared sick some nights that something was going to go wrong or that I was getting myself in over my head.
The “Why” is more important than the How and the What!
Let me take a deep breath and smile. Much better. Here’s the thing, time is flying by and the days, months, and years are all running together. When it comes to my personal life, routine and safety now tend to be the norm. But deep inside I know that life has more to offer. Sitting in a cubicle all day doing routine tasks and migrating from meeting to meeting, slowly becoming just another brick in a large corporate structure is zapping my energy away. This is where Elsy comes in. She is my rock and we complement one another. Whenever I have a doubt (ok, let’s call it what it is – anxiety), Elsy helps pinpoint the root of my fear and then helps me put a solid plan in place to overcome it or just accept it.
My point is this, knowing deep down that you want to make a change in a certain direction will turn all the unknowns into an adventure. An adventure that now becomes your new lifestyle.
More to come and please don’t be shy with questions, comments, and suggestions.