Originally Posted by Jamie Z
First I have to amend my comment above to mention that there was plenty in your write-up that is all-news to me.
You mentioned that asking for discounts is often not productive. You're right but I've been slow to recognize it. More than one writer has suggested asking for discounts. I've tried at hotels, motels, and campgrounds and get only a token if that. Last year I was looking for the full KOA showers/laundry setup and stopped at one that didn't recognize the AMA discount.
I've asked people if I could "sleep in their field" while wearing a backpack with pad on top. Your advice to ask about "set up a tent" may be better. I had wanted to emphasize that I'd be quiet and about invisible. Homeowners really do offer food and showers to travelers.
If you have a bushes or a bit of woods where you feel private, it's possible to bathe completely (except hair) with 1 to 2 quarts of water and 2 or 3 bandannas. Most comfortable if you have two mossy spots: one to stand on wet and one to stand on dry.
I like asking for water at farmhouses in the U.S. Most town water is chlorinated and I like the various flavors of iron and minerals that well-water offers.
Everything you wrote about introducing yourself and making the other person part of your trip were total news to me. I'm not outgoing at all. I have experienced but not recognized that people offer help when I don't ask.