Adventures with Debra and Robert

Behind the Scenes

Episode 4-Day One at the RTR, Rubber Tramp Rendezvous

Photo of Episode 4 Thumbnail

This article could have also been titled:


Photo of Yin Yang Rock Art
Yin Yang Rock Art, 2018 RTR

The estimate is that 1,500 people are here at the RTR already, and that number continues to grow daily.

Photo of Crowd at 2018 RTR Orientation
Crowd at Orientation Meeting, Day One, 2018 RTR

What fun it is to see friends – old and new, and to make new ones. And it’s always thrilling to see newbies find their tribe and make life-long friends as well. A lot of them will leave here traveling together. Needs expressed, needs met. That’s the beauty of the RTR.

And the classes offer any in attendance to learn anything they need to know in order to live the nomadic life. Nirvana, right?

Well, for some, not so much. That is an overwhelming number of people to have in a tiny space, for any length of time, let alone for 10 days. Most of us are introverts – which doesn’t mean that we are anti-social. A lof of introverts can be very outgoing. The definition of an introvert as used here, is that we recharge by being alone – in the stillness, in the peace and quiet.

My sister is an extrovert. She recharges by being around people and crowds. She gets filled. I get depleted.

I honestly can’t remember what I was like before my brain injury. My career choices indicate that I did well with large groups and noise

  • state employee on capitol hill in Austin, TX
  • middle school science teacher
  • Membership and Public Relations Director for a major metroplex Chamber of Commerce

Today? Just thinking about being around large groups of people or a lot of noise can drain me. I don’t even have to show up! LOL.

I have always sought solitude and connection with nature. As soon as I had a string of days off from work, I would load up my vehicle and the furbabies and I would head for the wilderness. I came back ready to be mainstream again. But the reality is my brain injury changed me.

I cannot do it. Believe me, I’ve tried. Since my diagnosis, I have tried a million different ways to stay mainstream and do the things I used to do. And it has cost me. I’ve suffered setbacks with my health, triggered TBI episodes, and the nose bleeds are too numerous to count. All of which happens when I push myself to endure situations I no longer can.

So, I don’t get to go to the classes. I don’t get to seek out my dear friends and hang out and visit. I don’t get to walk the main RTR area and meet new friends and fabulous viewers. I stay in camp with about a dozen of my close friends. And, it’s all good. Life is good, always, no matter what.

What do the rest of the introverts do to handle the crowds and gain a balance between socializing, learning and self care? Well, actually, that sounds like a good video to me. I know a couple of our friends have left and headed for the hills. Others simply retreat their awnings, close their doors, and hibernate until they are able to emerge recharged again. Whatever it takes. We’re all different, and yet we are the same.

And, as my friend Yolie reminds me, in the words of Ram Dass, “We’re all just walking each other home.” Even here, in the middle of the desert, attending the RTR, each in our own way.

Funny Photo of Introverts Unite Separately In Your Own Homes

Robert and I will host a meetup in a way that works for me so that I can meet peeps, new friends, old friends and our wonderful viewers. I truly wish I didn’t have to ask people to accomodate my special needs, but I am disabled. Acceptance of that has not come easy for me.

Please email us:, and we will give you the location and details. The meetup will be on Wednesday, January 17, 2018, from 3:00-5:00 p.m.

We have tried to choose a time and place that will be the least obtrusive to the RTR schedule. We love you guys! Keep On Keeping On, KOKO, no matter what! And in that, always, always, always take care of yourself and know that you are loved. See you down the road!


  1. DB Bourgeois

    LOL That’s a mug I need! Everything will work out for you, Debra. The people who really care will work around what you’re able to do. Sit back, enjoy the sunsets (and sunrises), a mug of coffee on chilly/cold mornings and life in general at your camp at the RTR. 🙂 (And please, no more kidney stones.) HUGZ ~db

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