RV News

There’s no stopping this couple

Jeanette and Dennis Vieira decided that life is too short for wasted time—so they started RVing

Jeanette wears a leather coat and stands next to Dennis in who wears a hoodie and jeans. Behind them is the brown and cream bumper of their flat-nose bus.
For Jeanette and Dennis Vieira, the RV life is just fine. — Photo courtesy Jeanette and Dennis Vieira

Taking to the road is never an easy decision, especially when it involves the commitment of moving into a moving home full time. Still, that is exactly what Jeanette and Dennis Vieira of the travel blog Cheddar Yeti decided to do after returning from a backpacking trip and realizing they wanted to live apart from the status quo.

Unlike many RVers, full time or otherwise, the Vieiras are still far from retirement. Fortunately, they were able to make their careers in web development and graphic design portable. Each now possesses a backpack office that can be carried around and assembled wherever. They’ve been driving throughout North America for three years now, and the journey has been an exciting one.

“What a trip it has been since we first set out on the road,” said Jeanette. “With no prior RV experience and few handy skills to our names, we can hardly believe how far we have actually made it. We're on our second vintage motorhome and can tell you that these units are truly a labour of love! Still, the biggest challenge (is) missing those whom we've left behind. We each grew up on opposite coasts so that always leaves someone we love too far away.”

The benefits, though, are plentiful. The Vieiras easily confess that they love discovering amazing people, places and food—all in their own country. Travelling by road, they claim, is a great way to make unique discoveries that could never be planned. The Internet, supportive friends and family, and the ability to embrace the unexpected have all contributed as they have made their dream a reality.

Getting around

The couple were living in a vintage motorhome but have recently bought their second house on wheels. They are now proud owners of a 35-foot 1978 BlueBird Wanderlodge Bus. They have been enjoying the dependability and niche community that the new rig allows them.

As with many permanent wanderers, the Vieiras prefer quirky finds to standard tourist attractions, some of which they post at Motornomadics. Their favourite destinations are often those that feature beautiful extremes—mountains, deserts and major cities that never sleep. Their enthusiasm as they recommend spots in the American West illustrates this well, whether it be the northern coast of California or the Colorado Rockies in the fall.

The Vieiras have as many stories as you might expect of an adventurous couple that live on the road. Their favourite anecdote illustrates the perspective they’ve gained since they started travelling. They were invited, at one point, to a New Year's Eve celebration in the California desert. Having never met any of the people in question, they prepared their RV and headed out in the right direction but without a specified address.

“We arrived to a warm welcome from a group of like-minded nomads who were ready to grill, share beer and light up the night,” said Jeanette. “The bonfires, group meals, bike rides, music and conversations of that week have continued to set the bar high for our travels.”

The right choice

As the couple expected, RVing has been a great fit that has helped them meet their expectation that life should be fun. It’s a flexible existence, they claim, and their greatest piece of advice is simply to go.

For the Vieiras, letting go of material “stuff” has made way for an amazing feeling of freedom.

“Beyond this year, we have no plans of stopping, as there's just too much to see, to eat and to explore,” said Jeanette. “At this point, it seems unimaginable that we'd ever run out of places to see in North America. Still, a caravan trip around the world sounds amazing—road tripping around the coasts of Australia, the European countrysides and the wild roads of Asia—we can't imagine stopping now!”

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