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Old 03-08-2022, 10:54 AM   #1
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Please offer to help, but please take no for an answer!

Had a frustrating experience last night. I was helping one of my RV coaching clients get parked right as it got dark and started to rain (which ramped up to a downpour). A fellow came around offering to help (yay!) but completely ignored 3 of us when we said we had it under control (boo!). Even ignored the driver when she said we had it under control (GRR!).

I may not have been the most polite when I told him that the driver having multiple people giving her instructions was a recipe for failure and he needed to move it along.

So I guess my tip - please do offer help, but please take no for an answer!
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Old 03-08-2022, 11:06 AM   #2
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I’m fine with having my offer declined. We boated for decades and always offered to handle lines for boats approaching and departing the docks. More often that not, our offer was politely declined. Conversely, we seldom accepted a dockside offer to help us enter a slip and secure lines.
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Old 03-08-2022, 11:24 AM   #3
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Early lesson we learned.

The DW and I do not want help parking!

We stop all rv activities if folks talk to us. That is when you screw up! We try not to talk to each other.
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Old 03-08-2022, 11:37 AM   #4
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Many years ago I pulled a horse trailer into a fairgrounds parking area, got down to the end of the row that should have been open so folks could either leave or check the next row and someone had parked blocking that area along a fence. I was fine backing until I got to the end of the row and had to jog between a barn, a race track and dozens of horses, people. Really needed a 2nd set of eyes so got out and asked. A very loud gentleman commanded everyone's attention taking control. Luckily he was standing far enough away from me and a quiet knowledgeable truck driver came up to the window and said, just listen to me and we'll get you out of here. He was great, the big fellow was still being loud and don't think he ever realized I was not listening to him My nerves were saved, was able to move to a different area and really appreciated quiet, concise help. Oh, and I did thank the loud guy....with a smile on my face!
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Old 03-08-2022, 12:39 PM   #5
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Once I was backing into a camping spot, DW was assisting. A guy walked over to my SUV window and proceeded to tell me "Keeping going, you're clear, keep going...". I stopped the SUV and asked him "What are you doing?",
he said "Helping you back in"
I said "That's what my wife is doing..." and I pointed to her (as she stood back there with hands on hips now)
he said "well, she didn't seem to be helping you so I thought I would..."
I said "No, we are communicating, she just doesn't need to be flapping her arms around and yelling if I'm backing in and all is fine. She just needs to point left or right or hold hands up for stop But thanks for trying to help"
He shrugged his shoulders and left.
Of course DW walked up and asked what was that all about, I told her, she rolled her eyes, shook her head and walked back to the end of the TT.
Our communicating when backing in is pretty simple, so I guess to someone walking by, it might seem like we're not communicating at all.
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Old 03-08-2022, 12:49 PM   #6
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This is one of our past toys, hooked up to our dedicated tow vehicle.
So yeah, I’m pretty comfortable with maneuvering in tight quarters. Most launch ramps weren’t designed to handle 70-foot rigs.
I appreciate offers to help but we have been doing this a minute or two.
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Old 03-08-2022, 02:32 PM   #7
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I always try to offer help and am always glad for the offer of help. "No thanks" is a great answer and should never be taken as anything other than "no and thank you".
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Old 03-08-2022, 02:49 PM   #8
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The only time I had a problem backing in last year was once when a kind host assured me I needed her help to navigate between a pad and a post. After a few attempts I think she concluded that I hadn't got a clue and she left. I then pulled forward and backed in perfectly using my mirrors and camera, as I always do.

I've found from experience I get on just fine without any help and unfortunately become a bit flustered with arms and flashlights waving all over the place.

I just couldn't work out a way in my mind how to politely tell her I would be much better off in the dark by myself at a new camp ground that she was highly familiar with and where she assured me most people have a problem backing in.
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Old 03-08-2022, 02:58 PM   #9
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I hear you Doug... good advice.

Moving to a motorhome are you?
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Old 03-08-2022, 03:09 PM   #10
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Thank you for this post. Too many cooks in the kitchen is exponentially worse. I realize there are plenty of solo RVers, I dont want to make it seem like everyone is a duo, but in that respect, when couples arrive, with the exception of those that are new to the game, they all have their own method of communication.

They also have a shared language. That is very important. When others help, they may not understand that shared language. Some people will say left. Some people will say drivers side. Some people will tell you where they want the trailer to go, and others might be telling you which way to turn the wheel. And those things can be the opposite direction and it will end up being worse. For me, I want to know exactly what to do based on the words I am expecting to hear. Then there is no thinking, no translating, just reaction. Same with a hand signal, etc. Reacting to the situation versus trying to think. Someone new doesnt know what those words or signals are, and now I have to see or hear their signal, then try to figure out what that means. I'm not above receiving help, we have all been in situations where help is greatly appreciated. But there is a time and place for everything.
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Old 03-08-2022, 03:25 PM   #11
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I hear you Doug... good advice.

Moving to a motorhome are you?
Yep, sold the rig last month and took the truck to a dealership yesterday. Bought a little baby truck to replace it that I can tow behind the motorhome.

Wanted to downsize and ended up in a 39' motorhome, so... it's less than our 45' toy hauler and won't have a 22' truck in front of it, but isn't nearly the < 35' rig that I had hoped we would end up in.
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Old 03-09-2022, 12:58 PM   #12
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Good information, as always, ependydad!

I accept help sometimes from strangers as DW is very sweet but directionally challenged.
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Old 03-09-2022, 01:00 PM   #13
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The only person I trust to help park is my wife. She has the experience to watch out for things for the during past 40+ years of camping. We use walkie-talkies. Now having a 30' motorhome, I can do it myself perfectly with the back camera and the mirrors. I suggest a person gets lots of experience using those mirrors, and always, always walk your site before you park to get the lay of the land and watch for obstructions and overhead branches before parking.
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Old 03-09-2022, 01:21 PM   #14
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I have had good and bad luck with backing in help. Usually, my DW has her phone and I call here using the hands free in the truck. This work really well but people don't always see what we are doing. I usually let others try to help as there was one time where we were right on track but my volunteer helper noticed a large low hanging branch as we were swinging in that DW and I weren't watching for. It would have definitely caused some damage. So as long as they aren't totally incompetent I take the help. An extra set of eyes never hurts.
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Old 03-09-2022, 02:09 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ependydad View Post
Had a frustrating experience last night. I was helping one of my RV coaching clients get parked right as it got dark and started to rain (which ramped up to a downpour). A fellow came around offering to help (yay!) but completely ignored 3 of us when we said we had it under control (boo!). Even ignored the driver when she said we had it under control (GRR!).

I may not have been the most polite when I told him that the driver having multiple people giving her instructions was a recipe for failure and he needed to move it along.

So I guess my tip - please do offer help, but please take no for an answer!
The first thing we do when we get to camp is that my wife gets out and takes the dog for a walk. By the time she gets back, I'm parked.

Take from that what you will.
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Old 03-09-2022, 02:35 PM   #16
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We take a good look at the site and decide where we want the TT. My wife stands where the rear corner of the TT needs to be and I back to her. I can back as good as any, but I don't always get where I want the first try. Usually when that happens I know exactly what I want to do, so I pull forward and get it backed in. Last Labor day we were the last in at Lake Erie State park in NY. Vehicles parked everywhere. Took a bunch of try's to get where I wanted without hitting something. Well, almost something. The mirror caught a campsite marker post. I didn't know it until I got out of the truck. The post was so loose in the ground the mirrow knocked it over without a sound. I then knew why a bunch sitting around a camp fire jumped up on one of my attempts.
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Old 03-09-2022, 02:43 PM   #17
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We take a good look at the site and decide where we want the TT. My wife stands where the rear corner of the TT needs to be and I back to her. I can back as good as any, but I don't always get where I want the first try. Usually when that happens I know exactly what I want to do, so I pull forward and get it backed in. Last Labor day we were the last in at Lake Erie State park in NY. Vehicles parked everywhere. Took a bunch of try's to get where I wanted without hitting something. Well, almost something. The mirror caught a campsite marker post. I didn't know it until I got out of the truck. The post was so loose in the ground the mirrow knocked it over without a sound. I then knew why a bunch sitting around a camp fire jumped up on one of my attempts.
I read all that, but you didn't say what I expected. I expected it to go like.

My wife stands where the rear of the TT needs to be and I try to run over her. It worked first time. Now I need a new wife.
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Old 03-09-2022, 02:58 PM   #18
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I will give help if I'm asked for it otherwise, I assume they have it under control.
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Old 03-09-2022, 02:59 PM   #19
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I'm fortunate to have a wife who is great at backing me up.
Once I taught her how to use proper hand signals, we're a great team. I just showed her what we use in fire service, to back the rigs into the station or tight places. And how to position herself so she's visible.
We usually decline any help from others, as they tend to mess up our routine.
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Old 03-09-2022, 07:23 PM   #20
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Single screw TV,

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This is one of our past toys, hooked up to our dedicated tow vehicle.
Very purpose built. Very unique What caught my eye is the TV. Single screw, long wheel base, sleeper berth. How many props & hp on the boat? Was this setup running the racing circuit?
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