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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Going Mobile

How to be an excellent neighbor at the RV park

Our nomadic journey involves a whole lot of moving on down the road, but there’s one notable exception: We park it for at least a month in Palm Springs every year.

One reason we’re drawn to this special spot is the Happy Traveler RV park. It might sound a little corny, but when we pull in, it feels like coming home. We’ve stayed in dozens of parks and this place really serves up a sense of community.

And when you’re part of a community, it’s especially important to be a good neighbor. Here are some of our best practices for being a good RV park neighbor.

Obviously, we’re going to follow the rules about quiet hours and keeping our site tidy, but we’ve taken it a step farther. Last year, John built a neat rock feature around our patio and Leslie planted a perennial in the pot that had been left by previous tenants.

Though curbside trash pickup is offered, we walk the garbage down to the cans and dutifully sort our recycling. We also pick up the occasional bit of litter while out walking (though we draw the line at collecting bags of dog poop).

Speaking of fur babies, we don’t have any, but we have learned the names of some of the four-legged friends who take regular strolls with their owners. We might even offer the occasional biscuit to make our new friends even friendlier.

When it comes to socializing, we make a point of reading the room. That means we engage in conversation with fellow travelers who are open to it and respect the privacy of those who just want peace and quiet.

A recent congenial chat with a woman named Barbara was particularly enlightening. She’s from Seattle and said that when she turned 70, she thought the time had come to act on her dreams of hitting the road, so she had a van conversion done by Cascade Campers. She’s spending the winter at the Fountain of Youth RV Resort near the Salton Sea. Way to go, Barbara!

Then there are the friends we’ve made during our multiple visits to this location. Leslie gets a kick out of visiting with Bob and Brad, who divide their time between Palm Springs and Carson City, Nevada. Brad recently showed her one of his favorite bike rides around the city. And we consider ourselves fortunate to be parked this year next to Dixie and Eric, who live near Portland.

Showing appreciation for the hard-working crew at the park is something we enjoy. When Jose shows up to tackle a trimming project at our request, there’s always going to be cookies and a little bit of cash. We admire the managers’ efforts to bring the community together for regular coffee and pastries, shuffleboard competitions and the weekly cribbage challenge.  Thanks, Rebecca and Gertie!

Finally, we follow the national park tradition of leaving no trace when we leave, giving the pad a good sweep before saying so long. Yes, Leslie’s taking a quick trip back to the Pacific Northwest to celebrate Valentine’s Day with her sweetie so we’re parking the Gemini in a storage facility for a few weeks. While being stationary for a bit has been really nice, it’s fun to start moving again.

Connect online

Please follow our adventures on Facebook and Instagram. And check out The Spokesman-Review’s Going Mobile Travel page for all of our stories, along with travel tales from our globetrotting pal, Dan Webster. Go to: If you want to connect, send us an email at

Leslie Kelly
Leslie Kelly is a freelance writer.