I’m a veterinary nurse, I wanted to be a veterinary nurse from around about the age of 13. My Dad would love to interject at this point and tell you the story of when I was 3 and had our pet duck around the neck in one hand and his saw (good parenting skills leaving that lying around Dad) in the other, very much ready to saw the ducks head off. I do love animals though. Like I’m obsessed with them and I truly believe I would never have gone through with it. Luckily the saw was removed and I’m sure I duly headed off for my next adventure.
I’m not particularly academic (any future employees, please note that I am a very good, potential employee!) I like hands-on stuff. If you show me how to do something once, I can copy it, day in, day out. I have honestly thought about a career change that is maybe within the trade industry because I enjoy fixing things, but things that aren’t alive and give you stress palpitations when you’re trying to fix them. I have learned a lot during this road trip about repairing things. If I had a work space I could have probably serviced the generator myself (I may have been scared to use it after but I would have give it a go) I’m getting finely tuned with Jenny and I know when something’s not right. Our heating decided to not work just the other day, so, I pulled out the multi tool ($18.99 from Walmart) and started undoing things and looking at wiring and fuses that meant nothing to me. However, after removing and replacing the odd thing, turning the circuit breaker back on, we had heat. I have fixed the leaking gutter (yes, we have guttering), I have fixed the broken latches and levers. I am planning on repairing some worn-away wood to be able to replace a screw that’s fallen out. I’m on it and I do rather love it. My Dad was a roofer and can make ornate cabinets and summer houses. He is 72 and has built a barn in my folks back garden. I learned a few tricks following him about during the school holidays as a kid, both me and my brothers earned the honourable prize of standing on rusty nails and being shipped off to the local A&E for our tetanus jabs, thanks to my Dad’s trade. I guess my love of creating and fixing is thanks to both my parents. At least it gives me something to do and is productive.
This leg of the trip has definitely been different to the first. It took a while for the novelty to wear off on the first leg and learning how to run an RV as a home seemed to take your mind off what it is that I’m essentially doing, which is just a lot of waiting. Waiting for and on Rob. When I’m not in the best of moods, the inside of Jenny can feel very claustrophobic and my patience doesn’t just slim down but becomes just skin and bone. I shouted at Rob the other day, as he promptly told me on his arrival to Jenny that the stop I had chosen wasn’t the correct one and it was a mile short. I also got pretty upset when being all excited at parking up at some quirky museum, full of weird sculptures, that Rob just wanted to sit off and rest (how dare he!) on his arrival to the RV, instead of having a good nose around like I wanted to do. I could have gone on my own but then that in itself gets a bit tiresome. I forget that Rob’s actually running crazy milage and of course gets tired, just as I think Rob forgets that I can’t just sit in or drive the RV all day, everyday. It’s something we both try to ‘fix’ though, by letting things pass and saying sorry, even when you don’t feel you should. So, in between cooking, cleaning, driving and waiting, I try to keep busy. I’ll take photos, knit and crochet (my newest hobby) and write. I even manage to visit the odd, tiny museum if I can, where I will allow myself one purchase, should anything take my fancy (I have the coolest NASA t-shirt). We also have plenty of time in the evenings where we are able to talk about anything and everything. We discussed what our first holiday destination should be after this run, with Rob’s being a lazy week on one of the Canary Islands and mine being some kind of mini tour in Italy or Croatia. I wonder who’ll win that one?
We’re now heading back through Texas, full of flat, rusty red soil, with slow turning derricks and ploughed fields, edged by the odd cotton plant that managed to escape the wrath of said plough and debris from the taken ones, spilling onto the road. The parking spots available for Jenny on these rural roads are practically zero, leaving you sneaking into a corner of someone’s field or parked up, along a country lane. Nearly everyone who passes, waves and a few have stopped to ask if I’m ok. It’s nice. It’s reassuring on days when you feel very tired of it all to find someone taking time to check that you’re ok. I am ok, I tell them and in my head I think, you should see the things I’ve managed to fix, all by myself. We have a long way to go yet but even on the days where we’re both a bit tired and fed up, we remember just how much we have achieved. Rob has run over 3600 miles, on foot, sometimes doing 40+ mile days and I….I have fixed a broken latch and cooked a few ok dinners.
One thing I do need to fix is a night out. That feeling of getting your outfit sorted; taking time to get ready with a few GnT’s and a Lush ‘bath bomb’ bath on the go and finally spending the last half an hour doing my winged eyeliner (3 times). I am looking forward to a good night out when I get back, so give me a shout if you fancy a night out in Liverpool when I get home.