Broken Down RVs, Boats Run Aground, Fears and Outside Help


We all have them.

It seems most of our waking hours are spent in fear or doing things to mitigate our fears.

A friend says:

Fears are like underwear: everyone has them but no one can see them.Adam Jeske

Fear of Breaking Down

For those that choose to ditch the suburbs to travel the fear of breakdown is high. Grand visions of your RV or Boat as a tiny little dot in a vast expanse of mountain range or sea are quickly squashed with the thought of “what if we break down there?”

It’s happened. Let’s see how the stories play out.

One if By Land

First up - Road Map to Nomad. We met parents Monica and Derek outside of Austin on our first year on the road. They recently hit the road again after some time back in the suburbs. 

So they hitch up the new RV, get 3 hours down the road, and trouble strikes. Some kitchen lines/cables (including a propane line) came loose, laid on the tires of the RV, and got severed.

Now what?



A friendly trucker helps them get road-worthy again and out of the rest area. They go down the road a ways to get in a campground to figure out what to do.

Traditional RV repair places fail them. Derek goes out to see what he can do on his own.

A truck stops. A man gets out.

Derek explained to him about having to at least fix and replace the propane line and the 110v electrical line. Not really knowing what else was needed at that point. The guy paused and said “well this is your lucky day.” Turns out he works for a local HVAC company! Pointed to his truck and said he had parts too!Monica

Outside help shows up. Fear overcome.

And - a new story to tell.

Two if By Sea

Parents Diane and Evan left Vancouver, BC on a multi-year voyage with their daughter Maia. They blog their journey at

Living aboard a boat one of the biggest fears is running aground. Diane describes the scene of what happened to a fellow cruiser:

Friends on a boat…did all the right things with their mooring—but around 4am, when the wind reached 30 knots, something broke. They were blown through a maze of coral and ended up wedged on a bommie.Diane @maiaaboard

Ok - I had to look that up too.

Bommie: an outcrop of coral reef, often resembling a column, that is higher than the surrounding platform of reef and which may be partially exposed at low

Now what?



As the tide dropped everyone in the anchorage helped to secure them—putting out anchors upwind, laying tires under their hull to cushion against the reef, and searching the charts for a route out of the reef.Diane @maiaaboard

Outside help steps in. Fear overcome. A new story to tell.

The True Fear

I have to ask. And maybe this is especially for we Americans. Maybe moreso the men.

Moreso - me.

What’s the true fear?

Is it actual, physical harm?

Or is the true fear of needing that outside help?

Being “needy” goes against our nature. We want to handle things. We want to be capable. We don’t want to need help.

A New Attitude Needed

We have friends who live in a bus. We have other friends who live on a bus.

There’s something about these bus people.

They’ve both broken down.

Multiple times. 

But they have a different attitude about it.

A breakdown isn’t so much a tragedy as it is an opportunity to see who God wants them to meet. An opportunity to experience the Grace and Mercy of a God who loves them.

They have stories of angels on motorcycles showing up with spare parts and advice, at night, in a parking lot. Stories of retired bus mechanics hitting the road to come find them and fix them.

They’ve learned to not only not fear the outside help but to look forward to it.

I’m striving for that.

Who Has Helped You?

Think back on your life. Can you remember a moment where you truly needed help and it showed up?

What did it look like?

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