#DigitalNomadNI | Blog 089 | Motorhome Life in Northern Ireland

November 22, 2023  •  Leave a Comment

I failed, and I failed miserably. I have done absolutely nothing in terms of anything I set out for myself in my last post. Dark Hedges? Nope, still not got near them. GoT Doors and sites, nope, not once did we embark on that adventure. The beaches? Oh, for sure we did a couple of those, but mostly the one less than 30 minutes away from here in Downhill. We mostly sat there during the summer and watched countless idiots discover that their vehicles are not great on soft sand, granted, a mistake I too have made, many many years ago in Castlerock.

So what's my excuse? Laziness, and the cost of living crisis.

Let me explain those two elements a little further. Laziness due in part because when I get parked up in a nice idilic spot, I just want to switch off and do bugger all. My drone has been out less that I intended, my photography has taken a back seat with my retiring from the wedding industry, and I just couldn't be arsed if I'm being really honest. It's only in the last few months that I've actually started personalising the van to our needs. Such as adding some hooks to hang stuff off, simple shit like that! Like seriously? Having built a camper from scratch, you'd think I'd be more invested in to the process, but nope. Okay, I did add some USB sockets to make life a little easier in terms of charging phones, but that was when we first bought it.

I added a new reading lamp above my bed, because I thought I was going to wreck the light fitting that wouldn't come off for ages, turns out, I just needed to a little more forceful, but, well, I had the new light, might as well fit it. It's snazzy, have to admit, and I now have 3 USB points near the rear shelving to charge stuff up, which has led to a new problem, leisure battery life. I'm going to have to add more of them next year. A bit of an investment, but one that's going to pay dividends on longer trips away.

I've replaced a toilet window, which just randomly fell off on our trip to Glencar, Ireland. I've had the water pump replaced, because I left water in the tanks over winter freezing it, and breaking it (I've probably mentioned that), and the last thing I've added is a mini projector to turn the motorhome into a cosy cinema, probably the best thing I've done!

I've had call outs for fix the fixed water pump, failed MOTs with the rear brakes (it's now back at the garage having those new brakes looked at, because they're noisy and dragging me back a little, to the tune of 3mpg loss, on average consumption), and fought leaks from the roof light.

So, it's not like I've been sat on my hoop this whole time, I have done stuff, I've just not documented any of it...

Moving on to the next element, the cost of living crisis.
Motorhome on a beachOn the beachDownhill Beach
What a time to invest in a motorhome hey? Fuel prices hikes, insurance costs rises, food costing more... Everything has just got harder! So, we've been sticking closer and closer to the house than we normally would have done last year. So, why drive for 2 hours to park up, when we could drive 23 minutes and be on a beach or on top of a mountain?

The downside of this that the local knobheads have a habit of driving past the van late at night and throwing eggs. Which is a pain in the arse to clean off the next day.

But it hasn't stopped us going on adventures with our friends, who also bought a motorhome this year, having rented one for the Coldplay Concert in Cardiff last June.

We met up with them in ours and had a few fun nights before heading on our separate ways, them back to Ireland, us up to Scotland for a few weeks. This weekend will probably be the last trip away, as the weather is closing in, it's not cheap to keep the van warm during the night AND the day!

I think we're all meeting up again in Dunfanaghy, County Donegal this Saturday, not sure yet, but that might be what's happening.

Will 2024 be any different? Will I be posting more content? I honestly don't know. I've 3 personal videos I've yet to edit and post dating back from January, the mojo has gone, guess I need to kick myself in the ass and motivate myself a little more.

The problem is I've got comfortable, and comfort is where passion dies. I know it, and I suspect you have gone through times in your life where you just can't be arsed too. As 2023 draws to a close, maybe I'll lean in to 2024 a little harder. Who knows...

What I have learned this year is that our local government could help the tourism sector a lot more, by simply having places for motorhome/camper travellers to get free fresh water, and a place to dump our waste. It seems the EU is way ahead on this, and it's a shame that more isn't being done to support the van life community, who do nothing more than spend in local little towns and do what they can to leave no trace.

 


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