Jonathan greets me at the door of the Casita office.
He welcomes the crew and me into the showroom with a big “good morning” and a smile. A Spirit model is in front of us. Jonathan extends his arm toward its door, “Go ahead and take a look.”
Oh no. If I fall in love with this Spirit, then I’m going to be disappointed with my Liberty. I step in and give the interior a quick glance. Hmmm. Nice. Very nice.
Jonathan says, “C’mon over here and see a Liberty just like yours.”
I am so excited I can hardly think straight.
I step inside and instantaneously the words tumble out, “Oh, I picked the right one! Jonathan, I picked the right one!”
The Liberty is better than I had imagined! . . . and it looks and feels roomier than the brochure pictures I’ve studied a gazillion times.
Jonathan leads the crew and me out to the garage where two Casitas sit side-by-side.
“That’s yours over there.”
I walk up to her, put my cheek against her shiny fiberglass, and give her a big hug! Mine at last!
Then, while waiting for Victor to come out to give me my orientation, a fella walks over to me from the other bay and says, “You must be that lady with the blog.”
“What? Yes, I am. How did you know?”
He tells me he ordered his Casita six months ago and stumbled across rvsue and her canine crew. He and his wife have been reading the blog ever since. His Casita is in the bassinet –er, bay — next to mine. I tell him to say hi to his wife. We chat for a while and wish each other good luck. Of course, in all the excitement I forget his name.
Orientation is fun!
Victor finds the right hitch extension and ball which is welded on in about fifteen minutes while I have a cup of coffee in the cool waiting room. Spikey wanders around the offices and showroom, while clingy Bridget sits at my feet.
Victor takes his time and does an excellent job explaining how to hitch up and work all the systems. Orientation over, I go to Jonathan’s office and turn over the certified check, plus a personal check for the hitch extension that was attached. Jonathan draws me a map to the campground, gives me a load of encouragement, and we go outside to take pictures.
Enough talk! You want to see the pictures!
Next . . . our first camp at Navarro Mills Lake!
All I can say is “W O W”!!! What a day! Roll on gurl!
We rolled right out of the Casita lot with the greatest of ease. I pushed the PTVs little “tow button” and I didn’t notice any difference with the trailer behind than if she weren’t even there.
We ran into some road construction in Corsicana and I’m proud to report we didn’t knock over one cone. So, yeah …. WOW!
GREAT pics of your new home!!! What a wonderful combination…Sue, crew, PTV,and…(must come up with a name soon)… Casita! Have a wonderful first night!
How exciting! Thinking of you guys … Kim
Before long we’ll be reading about YOU picking up your Casita!
I hope my post didn’t sound like the Liberty is better than the Spirit. You know how you just know when something is the right fit for you … a house, a car, whatever.
The Spirit is adorable! Like I said, I didn’t look at it long because I didn’t want to fall in love with it . . .
Oh heavens – not at all! I’ve never seen the Liberty in person. But I know I’ll see one at the factory and, like you, won’t linger for the same reason – I don’t want to fall in love. Cause they look completely wonderful – especially if you’ve got a crew of two!
Can’t wait to see the pics!
You wrote that comment before I posted. You see, Steve, these pics are for you!
Congrats & Thank You Sue for posting the pics. Your new rig looks awesome!!!!
If you’re still in the DFW area you’ve gotta stop by and have lunch at In’N’Out burger for me. And don’t forget about the Salt Lick BBQ outside of Austin in a lil town called Driftwood.
FINALLY! Can you believe today actually came? I am so excited for you – today will be a day you’ll remember, for sure. I can’t wait to read all the details, and of course I’m looking forward to your progress. As a newbie myself, it’s such fun following others as they are just starting out. Congratulations! Have Fun! 🙂
Thank you so much . . . For so long I’ve struggled to come up with topics to write about in this blog. Now there’s so much I want to tell everyone. What a wonderful day !
Can’t wait to hear how things went. Well, I’m sure. Looking forward to more RVSue and her canine crew adventures.
Hi, Marsha . . . We’re off to a great start!
We are excited for you and the crew. (I really wanted to put an exclamation point or two after that sentence, but someone once told me that using such things is really saying, “Look how clever I am.” And you being an ex-English teacher and all… But, you are off to a great start!!)
Whoever told you that exclamation points are bad never had a day like I had today!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So rock on, Hotel California!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
With a name like Hotel California, all I know how to do is rock on!!!!!! (Pretty clever, huh?)
Congratulations on your dream coming true. I look forward to reading about the adventures in your new life. If you’re looking for suggestions on an RV name, how about “Cassie”?
I found Oak Park on Google Earth and could see each camper slot, but I will miss the entertainment of watching you back the Castia into your first Home as it is not real time. LOL
Well, it’s nice to know you are looking out for me . . . or should I say, looking down on me . . . Fortunately, the campground is not very populated so I didn’t provide free entertainment to a bunch of hecklers . . .
I was so happy to finally see a picture of you, and of course, your crew and casita. We also have a liberty, my husband is disabled and it is easier in the one with that large bed. I am now waiting to read of all your adventures. Have fun……
The big bed is a nice feature. The crew and I have plenty of room with it made up as a full bed. I love it with the big table set up, instead of a bed but I’m not sure I’d like sleeping on the narrow bench seat, although it could be done.
Yeah, the picture . . . It’s high time I made my pictorial debut!
It would be a simple mod to widen one of the seats for sleeping just by putting down a piece of plywood – say 6-8 inches wider than the seat. A Home depot somewhere would cut it out of a half sheet of plywood for pennies. You could fill in the cushion gap with rolled up towels or such. (Or get really fancy and buy/salvage some narrow bits of foam) That way the wide couch could be a permanent bed, the crew could sleep on the narrow couch ( or more likely wherever they want), and you could leave the table up all the time.
That’s the great thing about Casitas – they are a permanent work in progress.
I’m thinking about a twin size bed across the back for a permanent arrangement. Then I’d get a sheet cut to fit a twin mattress. Leaving the big table up is really nice though.
For now, the full size across the back is working out okay. I need to live in this little house for some time to know exactly what I want to do.
I will continue to follow your adventure. I am envious, but I know I will learn a lot from your travels.
So many people have helped me and are helping me. I hope I can do the same.
I’m glad you’re sticking with me and the crew . . .
Liberty – Freedom what a fitting description for the rest of your life
I do feel liberated!
Wow! What a thrilling day for you! I’m still so excited for you.
Hi, Carla . . . It certainly is a day I’ll never forget!
wow! I am so happy for you and can’t wait to hear the further adventures of rvsue and her canine crew. I will be taking notes. I have four years to go before I launch my travel trailer home, so you have plenty of time to teach me the ropes. Just between you and me, I promise I won’t tell, how many attempts did you make before you got her backed into the campsite?
Can’t wait for more photos too, and maybe some of you relaxing in your Casita. You might have to teach Spike to hold the camera for that one. Have a wonderful new life!
Four years to go? It may seem like a long time now, but before you know it you’ll be “launched.” I’m happy for you. This is a fun way to enjoy our beautiful world.
The backing-in was fairly easy because I had someone coaching me. The real test is when I’m all by myself.
Thank you for the good wishes. Day one of my new life was indeed wonderful and now day two is turning out the same!
Enjoy your liberty! We have one as well and it, too,was the right layout for us. See you on the road!
I’m enjoying my liberty with my Liberty! Aren’t they great? This layout is going to work out well for the three of us. The crew likes the coolness of the vinyl floor. They go under the bed where it’s dark for little naps.
Do you use Google Earth and if so do you have the file that will show the COE locations ?
No I haven’t been using Google Earth lately. I’ve been using recreation.gov and other websites to locate campgrounds.
I’m staying here in Oak Park another night. It’s so beautiful here.
Oh Susan, I am so excited for you. You, the crew and Liberty look so happy. Aw…you hugged Liberty! I can just see that….and it brought tears of joy. Finally, Liberty!!!!
As everyone else, I am so glad you put your picture on line so everyone can see what a beautiful sister I have.
Your Mississippi Family is all excited for you and will be follwing you faithfully.
I love you, Susan
Your Big Sis
I’ve only been following you for a couple of weeks but really enjoy your blog. Congratulations on the beginning of your adventure! Your whole rig looks wonderful 🙂 I look forward to following your travels, and maybe we’ll bump into you on the road when we become fulltimers next year.
Congratulations to you, Pam, on your decision to fulltime!
Thanks for the compliment on the rig. It is so comfortable and well-designed. I’m very pleased with our new home.
Congrats on the rig! I like Spike’s “custer” pose, he’s very aware of this moment in history. You have much to learn but you will do fine.
Spike is a poser, all right! My sister Nancy (FL) emailed me about the pics and said that Spike looks like he’s in the secret service (not looking into camera).
Oh yes, I have a LOT to learn.
It looks like it’s riding pretty level. Have you got the brake adjusted yet? It took me a while to get that right. What’s your actual length? 37 feet or so? Does the PTV backup light shine bright enough for backing the trailer?
I’m really not much for naming trailers. That’s pretty personal, anyway. But I always thought if I got a Liberty I’d have a modest slogan emblazoned across the back: “I came first!”
It’s the sort of thing an Egg might say. If it didn’t chicken out.
Congratulations, Cap’n Sue.
I was pleased to see how level everything remained after hook-up at the factory. No need for a weight distribution hitch. The brake is supposed to be self-adjusting to a certain extent. I didn’t do anything to it and the braking felt good, not too much on the PTV and not too much on the Casita. Of course, we haven’t gone down any hills yet.
I’d estimate our length at 35-37 feet, haven’t measured. The camper is 17 ft. and the PTV is long as you can see from photos. The combination works well on the road … making turns is easy. I passed the turn to Oak Park (no sign!) and had to make a U-turn. I was nervous because of the length, that the radius would be terrible. We wheeled right around as easy as my ol’ Honda Odyssey!
I’m not much for naming inanimate things either. It does make it easier to blog when you have a short name like PTV.
Oh, the back-up light. I don’t know anything about it. I’m going to avoid night driving and night back-ins. I can do that, I’m retired!!!
The big test will be when coming down a hill with a stop sign at the bottom. That’s when you will really feel the thing push you. I unexpectedly slid right through an intersection once because I misguessed how much lead time I’d need with 7000 pounds behind me. Fortunately neither cop nor cross traffic were in the way. O, and it had been raining just enough to slick up the street.
A U-turn is a good test. Congrats.
Another thing that can happen is that the electrical umbilical can vibrate loose from the bumper connection, which means you don’t have trailer brakes. On a light trailer, you probably won’t notice it until you have to stop in a hurry, and can’t. After it happened a time or two, I used a ball bungee to secure the cover-lock down. That spring just won’t cut it, after a while.
As for backing up in the dark, I didn’t think I would either. After crunching the back bumper on a hidden boulder helpfully placed there for that purpose by the State of California, I ran a wire from the battery to a cheap Chinese driving light bolted to the bumper. I had to stop and turn it on with a switch, and a few tenters probably dreamed the Martians had landed, but I sure could see what I was backing into from then on.
Didn’t use it often, but when I needed it, I really needed it. It gets pitch dark under those trees.
Of course it was about 45 feet back there for me. The Casita is short and narrow enough that the PTV backup lights may do the trick for you.
Very interesting comments, Bob. About the brakes, the short, flat distance from Rice to this campground (under 30 miles) really didn’t give me a chance to test the brakes. I’m not going to forget about them. They may need adjusting.
There is a mechanism of sorts to hold the electric connection in place . . it screw-tightens.
You have had a variety of experiences to teach you. I need to remember to watch out for boulders in shady campgrounds.
You have 36 feet to worry about. I had 45 – maybe 48, including the bicycle. That probably makes a world of difference. I generally had to use the whole length of the site, just to get out of the road. Or unhook, and park to the side.
Another advantage of petite camping. :o)
Wow, the day finally came. Congrats to you and the pups on your new freedom. Now, are you going to give the Casita a name? I like Libby, short for Liberty. But, you’ll come up with something I know is better. Looking forward to following your adventures. Stay safe and drive careful.
I’m going to let the name appear naturally, as did PTV. I believe I was going on and on about my perfect tow vehicle when someone commented about it and used the letters PTV. I thought it would make a good name, not too cute.
Thanks for the congratulations and yes, I will drive safely, what with my whole life being pulled behind me on the road!
How was your first night of “liberty” in Liberty? Good thing your dogs are small so they can fit under the bed! Our 80# pooch sleeps in the “hallway” by the stove!
We slept right through the night (didn’t cry once for a ba-ba). I woke up just before dawn to see a near-full moon peeking through the window blinds.
The crew will probably lose their under-bed area as I’m filling it up with stuff from the PTV that I want handy. They prefer the bed anyway. Spoiled, I know.
Great news. Now get signed up for one of the Casita rallies that fit your schedule. Hope to meet you on the road soon……jc
Same here, Jerryc!