Recycling Our Bed: Serenity Gets a Queen

Wren on March 26th, 2012

One major point of having Serenity, our rolling house/office, is to maintain that sense of home. We can cook our own healthy food, we have books, movies and music with us, Tuatha has his dog toys and knows that when we leave him in Serenity, we’re keeping him safe at home, where we’ll return.

One nice comfort of home is sleeping in one’s own bed. We’re not on a hotel mattress, or a host’s sofa sleeper. We’re home. This is a point I care about, because I have arthritis and a bad back. I am particular about the surface I sleep on. I seem to do better with air mattresses or waterbeds generally, so in our motorhome, the choice was air.

But the devil always gets you in the details: The motorhome we ended up finding, that was it, and the perfect one, was imperfect in one detail: The back bedroom had two twin beds.

This will not do. Looking at the two beds with the built-in nightstand between, I constantly flashed back to The Dick VanDyke show, and poor Rob and Laura Petry who were not allowed to share a bed on prime time television. Weird how far we’ve come. And yet, the sex that gets shown is usually just a different way of oppressing people…

putting the pieces in place for a preview of the final product

So C.T. and I designed and discussed. We consulted and conjured. It felt exciting to rip out the built-in frames of the twins, and to design the new queen bed platform using those pieces, planning for the little access doors to be functional. We expect to store two EZUp canopies under the bed, for impromptu workshops. We can keep extra tables and out of season clothes there. Living in an rv, we are learning how to maximize our space use.

Since we plan to travel the country with enough copies of C.T.’s books for the various Occupys, we have to account for the weight we add to the motorhome. We also have to plan how to distribute that weight. If we find ourselves in a jackknife situation on some highway, the weight distribution could be the difference between life and death.

It’s empowering to take responsibility for ourselves in this way. We have to learn the inner workings of all Serenity’s systems, and diagnose problems. We can change things and remodel. We can gut it, paint it purple, whatever.

No good DIY project is complete without a minor injury that bleeds profusely. This time it was C.T.’s turn, as he lost control of a screwdriver that stabbed him in the finger! Ouch!

In 1986, when Serenity rolled off the assembly line, few people had personal computers. and few would have thought of bringing such electronics with them on an rv trip. So it’s only the latest rv’s that have computer consoles. We need two or three, for our team.

C.T. ices his mashed finger

So we plan to tear out a swivel chair in the living room and a vanity sink in the bedroom to create space for computer stations. And we’ll have to get mobile hot spots or some such things to have reliable internet. Right now, we’re mooching off our hosts, who allow us to park next to their house. They’ve provided a 100 foot internet cable and a plug in for 30 amp electrical service, which they had installed for our visit. We haven’t started using the water systems in Serenity yet. So we go into the house for showers, dishwashing, etc. But as the warm weather arrives, we’re considering starting up the water.

In the meantime, today will see a bulletin board mounted for project notes. The sun is dancing with the ocean breeze outside, where the dog is meditating in the grass. Life in Serenity goes on!

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