“Thunk” Brings BIG Change

The Big RigOk, things are changing in our corner of the world. If you know us, you already know that. We are saying goodbye to the Big Rig and hello to the next phase of our adventure.


Here’s the thing – change is tough – we’re good at change – but it’s still tough.

We made the decision in 2014 to let go of 90% of everything we owned. It took us 9 months from the decision point to handing the house keys over to the new owners. What a crazy 9 months that was.

Everything we owned, and I mean everything, had to be handled and a decision made about its future. The choices were: Pitch, Gift, Donate, Store, Take. Not much made the Store category and even less made the Take category. It was quite a project. We dubbed it Curate the Crap.

The goal of the Curate the Crap project was (obviously) to clear the crap and embark on our Big Rig adventure as crap free as possible. We left Ohio on November 7, 2014 with an agreed upon time frame of one year. That’s right. We got rid of most everything we owned with a one year plan. Lots of people thought we were crazy. Some of our friends even made bets on how long we’d last. Maybe we were crazy, but we didn’t care. The blog name came from our initial timeframe – Open Road 365.

The time frame was for my benefit. It’s what I could get my head around. I couldn’t face actually leaving the area – for real – but I could face leaving for a year. Other Half humored me (he’s good at that) but said from the beginning we would need more than 365 days. He was definitely right. He loves that.

So here we are into our third year. So much for 365 days. We’ve been on the road living in the Big Rig for 875 days. By the time we move out it will be well over 900 days. On one hand, that sounds like a lot – on the other hand – not so much.

Depends on who you ask.

The Big Rig is good sized. It’s close to 40’ long and sports 4 slide outs. All totaled we’ve been living in about 350-ish square feet. Of course, that’s not counting the great outdoors – which certainly adds considerably to our living space.

I won’t pretend living this close hasn’t had some challenges. It has. We’ve made it work but sometimes just the other person breathing can annoy the crap out of you.

But here’s the thing. We’re here because of – what we call – the Thunk Test – and we’re leaving because of the Thunk Test.

The Thunk Test is a way to recognize how you really feel. When I say how you really feel – I mean that deep down feeling that doesn’t go away even if you ignore it. When we embarked on this adventure – it was because we both felt the thunk.

Here’s how it happened. We found ourselves empty-nesters in a 3200+ square foot house. This wasn’t a total shock. The house had been a 10-year plan and right on schedule it was time for our next move. But what should that move be? We considered several options – small house, condo, apartment – and what area – snow or no snow?

While I realize how fortunate we are to have options — every option left us with a thunk — that is until we hit upon living in the Big Rig. Now that was exciting. No thunk there. That’s how we made our decision. Once the decision was made the craziness began.

Now, 875 days into our 365 day plan, the thunk has struck again. Only this time it hit one of us while the other was ignoring the signs. I’ll let you guess which one thunked and which one ignored.

So here we are – letting go of the Big Rig and looking at sticks and bricks in a community in Southern California. SoCal is not where either of us expected to land, but it’s all good. Let the craziness begin…again.


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16 Responses to “Thunk” Brings BIG Change

  1. Anna

    Enjoy every day of your new adventure, Kris. I hope everything works out for you in California. I was really hoping to see you again in Florida this year. Like you, I have had many adventures this past year and was anticipating sharing them with you, but until we meet again, be safe and love life. HUGS.

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      Hi Anna, No Florida this year – but maybe next year! Once we get situated we’ll have a guest room if you and Dave head west. We would love to have you! Enjoy your adventures! (Maybe you should start a blog – think about it.) Hugs

  2. Wendy Najjar

    This sounds exciting, Happy that your living life! 😘

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      Thanks Wendy. We’re having fun and gearing up for the next chapter. Hope you and yours are happy and having fun too.

  3. Deb Quigg

    Good luck in your next chapter!!!!

  4. Julie Watson

    We have so enjoyed reading about your journey. Thank you for letting us ride along. We wish you the very best always ! Keep us update as you move forward with your next journey.
    Super excited for the both of you, Mike & Julie

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      Thank you Julie & Mike. We’ve had a great ride in the Big Rig but it’s time for our next adventure. Exciting but definitely discombobulating!

  5. What a great approach. We try to follow the same philosophy. Nothing is forever, and we’ll just keep doing things until it doesn’t feel right anymore. Then we’ll try something else.

    Good choice on SoCal – great place to land.

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      You are soooo right – nothing is forever! We’re much happier when we follow our hearts and recognize the thunk when it shows up. I follow your adventures too. Looks like Valencia Spain is amazing! Would LOVE to experience Las Fallas!

  6. I have enjoyed reading your blogs very much. Cindy posts them on FB and I get them as an email. I told Cindy that I could see some traveling in her future and she thought so, too.
    Anyway, I know you have thunk this over a lot and, yes, new adventures are a lot of fun and fun work, too.
    I pray you will sell the big rig when you are all set to let it go and you find wonderful friends and neighbors in your new hood. I only know you through Cindy but I love you as I love her, too. Knowing and working with Cindy many years ago is one of the biggest blessings of my life. You both are beautiful Ladies. Take care, dear one, Marilyn Morris

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      Thank you Marilyn! I greatly appreciate you reading our blog. We plan to continue with our adventures – just from a home base. You are right about Cindy – she is a blessing!

  7. Kim Yelton

    I don’t know who ignored the signs and who didn’t. How come SoCal? What’s the draw?

    • ksdowney@gmail.com

      We’re landing in the Palm Springs area. Year round nice weather and close to Meg are the big draws. Big change!

  8. Linda Stanford-Wortman

    Good Luck on your new adventure!!

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